Southend's High Street gets a refresh in celebration of this year’s Great British Spring Clean
Southend BID, Southend’s local Business Improvement District, has brought the powerful message of the Great British Spring Clean (an initiative running from the 18th May – 13th June 2021) to Southend-on-Sea by hosting a clean-up event throughout the town’s High Street. In doing so, Southend BID and its members have collectively revitalised the town’s community hub, supporting its mission to make Southend-on-Sea a tourism hotspot this summer.
On Tuesday 1st June, Southend BID and committed members of staff from several BID businesses, including Metro Bank, McDonald’s and The Royals Shopping Centre, gathered at The Forum in Elmer Square to collect litter picking equipment ahead of a carefully planned, invaluable clean-up effort throughout the town. In total, 14 locals participated with the support of the Make Southend Sparkle team.
The team subsequently collected litter from across the High Street, side streets and the top of Southend-on-Sea’s seafront, stretching from the Royal Terrace to Clifftown Parade and Pier Hill, removing hazardous litter to rejuvenate the area. Despite temperatures soaring and sunshine beating down, this team worked from 2-4pm, persevering with unwavering enthusiasm.
Having conducted the clean-up during half term, participating BID members were delighted to see the town so busy and vibrant, with locals and tourists alike enjoying Southend’s wonderful shopping, dining and child-friendly amenities. They received an incredibly positive response from members of the public and therefore successfully highlighted the importance of sustainability and cleanliness, demonstrating that the businesses of Southend-on-Sea are committed to maintaining the town’s historic beauty.
Overall, the Great British Spring Clean has collected over 1 million bags of litter and 998,730.6 miles have been pledged towards its ‘million-mile mission’ this year. Southend BID are honoured to have contributed and are proud of their members’ ongoing efforts to enhance Southend-on-Sea, creating wider change and positioning Southend-on-Sea as a town to watch.
Discussing the clean-up, several participating BID businesses have shared why they feel it was so important for the Southend-on-Sea Community:
Mark Belsham, Metro Bank Southend Assistant Store Manager: “Litter is literally rubbish,
nobody likes to see it and for dog owners it presents a real menace as dogs can’t leave it alone and it can be dangerous for them. We are happy to work with other local businesses to keep our streets litter-free so everyone can enjoy them. This is a brilliant initiative and we are proud to be part of the solution.”
Dawn Jeakings, Manager of The Royals Shopping Centre:“We pride ourselves in keeping the centre clean and litter-free; to assist with a litter pick in the surrounding area is only going to improve our visitors’ experiences. We also take pride in our town and hope that this message gets through to those that visit Southend and do not take their rubbish home with them – the result of which often ends up in our oceans. It is great to see so many businesses coming together for the cause – keep Southend tidy.”
McDonald’s: “Myself and the team were really pleased to be able to take part in this year’s Great British Spring Clean alongside Southend BID and other businesses. Litter picking is part of our regular and ongoing commitment to the town and we know that doing so has a positive impact on both the people and environment in which we operate.”
Meanwhile, Suzanne Gloyne, BID Manager, has expressed her pride in the BID’s effort to oversee such an important and environment-driven event:
‘We were thrilled to see many BID businesses participate in our clean-up event; we are all committed to helping the environment and improving the appearance of the community in which we all live and work – the success of this event shows that. Meanwhile, we highlighted the importance of community cleanliness to members of the public as we set a positive example and restored the natural beauty of our seafront and town centre.
Southend BID will continue to proactively enrich Southend-on-Sea, with a significant focus on the health and cleanliness of the town that we call home. The Great British Spring Clean may have inspired this event but our efforts certainly aren’t seasonal – we must all work collectively to protect the structures within our town year-round, maintaining all that makes Southend-on-Sea great.’
Members of the public are advised to bin their rubbish or take it home with them if bins are full. According to Keep Britain Tidy, the RSPCA receives 5,000 calls each year regarding wildlife that has been affected or injured by litter – we must all help to solve this problem.
As part of this event in collaboration with Make Southend Sparkle, Southend BID businesses personally collected 16 bags throughout its clean-up effort, including cigarette ends, face coverings, drinks bottles, takeaway cups, boxes, bottle caps, tissues, clothes labels and receipts. Now, the entire community must come together to sustain the progress they’ve made, whilst Southend BID’s positive influence on the community will continue to drive progress and preserve the unique charm of Southend-on-Sea.