Adopt-a-Street Community Project Picks Up £10,000 Grant

Liz TerryA NEW community clean up scheme has scooped £10,000 from an initiative run by Tesco supermarket.

The Adopt-a-Street programme aims to encourage residents and community groups to improve and maintain the appearance of their neighbourhoods, with the support of Reading Borough Council.

The council put forward the scheme for the Tesco Bags of Help initiative and it was selected as one of the three finalists in the region.

Shoppers were then invited to vote in-store for their favoured scheme and Reading’s Adopt-a-Street project came second, resulting in a £10,000 grant.

Adopt-a-Street gives individuals and community groups the chance to take part in regular locally-organised community clean-ups in their areas. The council will supply materials, such as litter bags, gloves, litter pickers and high-vis jackets and then collect any litter and materials afterwards. This will be in addition to the council’s routine street cleaning operations.

Adopt-a-Street signs, with the names of the adopters, will be presented and installed in streets where neighbours have successfully participated in the scheme.

Similar projects have been very popular in neighbouring authorities, including Wokingham and Woodley, and Windsor and Maidenhead currently have more than 1,000 volunteers including individuals, schools, businesses and community groups.

Work will now begin on bringing the project to life.

Councillor Liz Terry, Reading’s Lead Member for Neighbourhoods, said:

“I would like to thank everyone who voted for the Adopt-a-Street scheme. I’m delighted with the result.

“The £10,000 grant will allow us to get this exciting scheme off to a great start and involve volunteers from communities across the borough.

“We will be letting people know how they can get involved in Adopt-a-Street in the coming weeks.”

Voting ran in stores from 31st October to 13th November with customers choosing which local project they would like to get the top award using a token given to them at the check-out in store.

The amounts on offer were £12,000 for top place, £10,000 for second and £8,000 for third. All the money on offer has been raised through the 5p plastic bag levy.

Lindsey Crompton, Head of Community at Tesco, said:

“Bags of Help has been a fantastic success.

“We been overwhelmed by the response of our customers and it’s been great to give people a say on how the money will be spent in their community. We can’t wait to see the projects come to life.”

Tesco works with environmental regeneration charity Groundwork on Bags of Help and from now on thousands more projects are set to benefit as the scheme is being expanded to run all year round. Customers will be able to vote for local groups to decide on grants which will be awarded monthly.

Groundwork’s national chief executive, Graham Duxbury, said:

“It’s just the beginning for Bags of Help and we’re really excited about the future.  The scheme will be permanently open for applications, and as grants can now be used for not just the development of, but also for the use of local outdoor spaces, we expect even more groups will now have the chance to benefit.”

More information is available by visiting www.tesco.com/bagsofhelp

Notes to Editors

•             1,251 organisations from around 400 Tesco regions up and down the UK will receive a share of the Bags of Help fund

•             The initiative is supported by money from the five pence charge levied on single-use carrier bags

•             More than 2,800 groups up and down the country applied for grants from the scheme. These were whittled down to three in each of Tesco’s regions.

•             So far Bags of Help has awarded over £24 million to 2,421 local community projects.

•             For more information please visit: http://www.tesco.com /bagsofhelp

 

David Millward

For media enquiries about this release email david.millward@reading.gov.uk or call 0118 937 4289