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'Litter quickly reappears' - couple vow to tackle street rubbish in Ipswich suburb

PUBLISHED: 19:36 24 January 2020 | UPDATED: 11:09 25 January 2020

James and Sarah De-Vaux Balbirnie are setting up the Whitton Wombles group in Ipswich. Picture: JAMES DE-VAUX BALBIRNIE

James and Sarah De-Vaux Balbirnie are setting up the Whitton Wombles group in Ipswich. Picture: JAMES DE-VAUX BALBIRNIE

Archant

A green-living couple are starting a group to step up the fight against street rubbish in a busy Ipswich suburb - after noticing that "litter quickly reappears" when cleared away.

James and Sarah De-Vaux Balbirnie have been "adjusting our lifestyles to minimise our environmental impact" for 10 years, cutting their use of plastics and buying more recycled goods from charity shops.

But the vegan pair are now taking their environmental fight to the streets of Ipswich, setting up the new Whitton Wombles to carry out regular litter picks.

Their first event takes place on Saturday, January 25 and will be supported by Jason Alexander, dubbed the Wildlife Gadget Man for his efforts collecting beach and street waste.

Mr Alexander runs the similar Ipswich Wombles group and Mr Balbirnie said: "It was after meeting Jason Alexander (of Rubbish Walks) at a litter pick in Woodbridge that we felt so encouraged by the large group of likeminded people - and very positive reception from the public - that we decided to set up a group."

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Mr Balbirnie said: "Whenever we see litter in areas where we are we've always tended to pick it up and transport it what is very often the very short distance to the nearest bin.

"In Whitton we decided to create a group because we realised that when we cleared the litter it would quickly reappear, so we realised we definitely needed help as well as to spread the message that our surroundings are only as nice as we make it.

"I'm not sure how many people are going to join us on Saturday but even if it's just a handful of us at first, I hope that more people will see us tidying the area and be motivated to get involved.

"I really hope that seeing people from varied backgrounds and of all ages volunteering their own time may make the small minority of people who do drop litter reconsider doing so in future."

Mr Alexander has also offered some equipment to help get the Whitton Wombles started.

The plan is to meet up at Al's Cafe in Meredith Road from 12.30pm to set out at 1pm.

The litter pick will cover Shakespeare Road, Old Norwich Road, Whitton recreation ground and Spenser Road.

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