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Marsh Awards for a Beautiful and Litter Free Countryside

This Award was run with the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) and recognised volunteers who worked to reduce litter in the countryside, in a sustainable way that engaged and impacted their local community. The Award recognised both an individual working within CPRE and an individual or group working outside CPRE.
The Award was presented from 2012 until 2013.

Julie Hepworth and Nick Pickles 2013

Julie Hepworth – Julie is the driving force behind the Pickering Litter Pickers, a group of volunteers from CPRE Ryedale working to clean up rubbish from Pickering, a market town on the edge of the North Yorkshire Moors, and the surrounding countryside. She has worked tirelessly to create campaigns to educate the community about not dropping rubbish and was one of the key people behind the famous ‘Rubbish Song’ which is sent to primary schools to educate children about litter. Julie’s work has inspired and encouraged other branches of CPRE and she takes the time to coach them in their campaigns.

Nick Pickles – Nick is responsible for creating the BeachCare group, a litter picking team which tackles the issue of marine debris and litter in Polzeath by picking up litter in the winter to complement the Council’s work in the summer. He has engaged with local residents, schools and business and supervises the beach cleans to ensure that they are effective and participants feel educated about the importance of not dropping litter. Nick also volunteers for the National Trust and is a member of the Polzeath Marine Conservation area group. His contributions have been key to protecting the environmental beauty of the area and all it has to offer.

Previous Winners

Patricia Almond and the Cunmore Cleaners

Patricia Almond – Patricia joined CPRE Isle of Wight after President Bill Bryson’s involvement in the ‘Stop the Drop’ campaign, taking over the group’s ad-hoc litter campaign and properly organising it. She presents awards to other individuals and groups who have helped clear up litter on the Isle of Wight and has increased public awareness of this work through local media coverage. Patricia has produced kit bags for litter-pickers which are placed around the Island and are ready for instant use. She was invited to be interviewed on the radio about CPRE’s litter campaign on the Isle of Wight which helped raise even more awareness.

Cunmore Cleaners – This twice-yearly community event across an area of 10 square miles and involving over 100 volunteers of all ages began with a small advertisement in the parish newsletter. The event has successfully engaged the local district and parish councils, schools, community groups and local businesses, and also has a positive working relationship with local waste contractors. A bursary award has now been set up for students at the local secondary school, where students receive funding for a study, some research or other activity linked to engaging young people in fighting litter. The project is organised with no budget, no committee and no rules, just a “positive, shared belief, lots of common sense and old-fashioned courtesy”.