Hundreds of bags of rubbish as well as sofa cushions, bikes and a shopping trolley were removed from Reading’s river banks, green spaces and streets thanks to a Thames Water sponsored litter-picking event last week.
Working in partnership with Connect Reading, volunteers from Thames Water were joined from businesses from across the town for the twice yearly Reading RESCUE (Rivers & Environmental Spaces Clean Up Event), which has been running since 1989.
Neeti Bindra, Thames Water’s community investment coordinator, said: “Reading RESCUE is a great way to help keep the town tidy, and we’re proud to be sponsors again. There was a great turn out so our thanks goes out to all the volunteers.”
Melinda Lucass, a Thames Water volunteer, added: “I’ve volunteered twice every year for the last decade and will continue to do so even after I retire later in the year. It’s amazing to see the impact over the years that a simple act of picking litter can do, especially along the river, green spaces and the woodlands. Come rain or sunshine it’s something I look forward to doing with my colleagues.”
Staff from a number of Reading businesses, including Markit Economics, Work Day and Bottomline Technologies, gathered at Thames Water’s HQ in Vastern Road on Friday (March 8) to clear the banks of the River Thames.
Community groups, Friends of Lower Kennett, the Tilehurst Globe, and the Coley Park Community Association, continued the clean up across the town over the weekend.
Kirsti Wilson, managing director of Connect Reading, who organised the event, said: “Reading RESCUE is always supported by people who are passionate about Reading, and last week was no exception. Volunteers – old and young – from local businesses and the community enthusiastically joined in to clear litter and rubbish from our green spaces and the riverside, and their efforts as ever will have made a difference to the town, and are very much appreciated.”
As part of the company’s £11.7 billion business plan for 2020-25, Thames Water has dedicated an additional £1.1 billion for activities to protect and enhance the environment, including an 18 per cent reduction in pollutions.