'Disappointed': 171 cans and bottles littered across Ipswich estate
Litter-pickers said they were "disappointed" to find a huge level of rubbish strewn across an Ipswich estate - including 176 cans and bottles, a mattress and a 16-year-old crisp packet.
Caroline Schug and her eight-year-old son Ryan decided to set up the new Chantry Wombles litter-picking group after becoming "fed up" with the amount of waste seen on their streets.
Inspired by the Whitton Wombles set up by green-living couple James and Sarah De-Vaux Balbirnie, the new group covered Stone Lodge Lane West, part of Birkfield Drive, Hawthorn Drive, Sheldrake Drive and Mallard Way in their first event on Saturday, February 8.
But the 10 people who took part, which also included Rubbish Walks founder Jason Alexander, said they were surprised to collect more than five bags of rubbish including 101 cans, 55 plastic bottles and 25 glass bottles - all of which will be recycled.
"We even found a mattress just left in the middle of the path and a 16-year-old crisp packet stuffed in a hedge," Mrs Schug said.
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"I was surprised yet disappointed to find the amount of litter that we did, especially when there are plenty of bins in the area."
Mrs Schug and her son, who has a Green Blue Peter Badge for his own litter-picking efforts, have lived in Chantry for nearly two years.
"I had been thinking for a while about doing something about the litter around the area, as I was getting fed up of it," Mrs Schug said.
"The group's aim is to clean up different parts of Chantry each time we meet, to look after and respect the area we live in for - not only for us residents but the wildlife too, as well as encouraging the residents to meet new people and socialise at the same time.
"You cannot walk far before finding more litter discarded, even when there is a bin just a few feet away.
"It's particularly bad in the more communal areas like around the schools, library, car parks and the shops."
For more information, visit the Chantry Wombles Facebook page.