A joint litter pick clears busy road ahead of official launch of schools’ new Puffin crossing

Westgate and Birchington anti-litter groups have cleared the A28 outside King Ethelbert School

Two litter-picking groups joined forces this weekend to clear a busy stretch of road.

The Birchington Anti- Litter Group and Westgate Against Rubbish teams met up on Saturday (September 2) to clear the A28 Canterbury Road which runs through both areas.

Mike Kite, from BAG, said: “We made a concerted effort in the King Ethelbert School area, giving the road a good litter pick both sides and in the central reservation.

“We cleared about six bags with rubbish including plastic and glass bottles, it’s amazing that there was so much there but a lot gets thrown from cars. A colleague from Westgate also made her way picking down to the library traffic lights.”

BAG was formed two years ago and has been growing in strength.

Mike said: “It was started by two ladies, Karen and Lorraine, who used to litter pick along the A28 right from St Nicholas-at-Wade to Birchington. I talked with them and we agreed to set up a facebook group to encourage other people to join in. It has grown from there and we now have a number of regular litter pickers in Birchngton.”

The group has around 60 online members with a core number of 20 regularly out clearing the village. They often attend events to make sure the area stays tidy and Mike says simply seeing members in their hi vis often encourages people to dispose of their rubbish properly.

BALG is now in talks with A Better Cliftonville group about a joint effort in that area.

The A28 clean up comes ahead of the opening of the new puffin crossings outside King Ethelbert’s School.

The road safety measures will be officially opened on Tuesday following an 18 month campaign by Birchington councillor Suzanne Brimm and head teacher KIate Greig.

Last year the school, and neighbouring Ursuline, with Birchington councillor Suzanne Brimm, set up a petition calling for the safety measure after two pupils suffered serious injuries in accidents on the dual carriageway.

Cllr Brimm highlighted the issue during Road Safety Week and circulated the petition.

She also took part in a speed watch on Canterbury Road with teachers and pupils from the school.

Work took place during the Summer holidays to install the £160,000 crossings (one for each carriageway) which will be named after the two school lollipop men.

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