The Team’s latest recruit, Jackie Andrew, with other members (Photo: Middlewich Guardian)

An army of volunteers who won a Home Office award for making a stand in the community is appealing for new recruits. Middlewich Clean Team is celebrating it’s eighth year in the town and now has more than 100 members including Fiona Bruce, MP, but founder, Janet Chisholm, wants to encourage people who have recently moved to the area or not experienced the group, give it a try.
Volunteers meet twice a month on Saturday and Monday to pick litter, while others prefer to work on their own or with neighbours to look after their street.”Some people just like to take pride in their own area,” said Janet of Brooks Lane. “We feel that contributes highly to our success.” But the Clean Team also keeps an eye on the town. They work with Cheshire East Council’s Streetscape to report incidents like fly-tipping and have a partnership with the police as ‘community crime fighters’. Six regular members also have St. John Ambulance First Aid training so they are prepared if they are first on the scene in an emergency.
Janet added:”Streetscape describes us as the eyes and ears of Middlewich. “This is a really positive group with the aim and desire to have a clean and tidy town – we feel we are winning the battle. “Friendships have grown over the years. It’s very sociable. “One member has just had an operation and every day, he’s walking and litter picking. So he’s gaining two things – pride and the health benefits. We’re always looking for new members and it doesn’t have to take a lot of time – five minutes twice a week to keep your neighbourhood clean and tidy.”
The group has already inspired new clean teams in Sandbach and Warrington, and volunteers will be speaking to Winsford Town Council in April. Janet Even met a man who wanted to set up a clean team in France. “If anyone wants to set up a clean team, we’re happy to help.” she said.
Volunteers also visit nurseries in Middlewich and regularly talk to the schools. Janet added: “It’s nice to speak to people we’ve seen grow through the years into responsible citizens.
For information on how to join, call Janet on 836263 or visit our home page.
Article reproduced by kind permission of the Middlewich Guardian.