Belfast Telegraph

Getting started on the task in hand

First, decide where you would like to clean up — perhaps a local landmark or a well known ‘grot spot’.

Make sure you get permission from the landowner for your activities. Once you have decided on the time and date for your clean-up, register at the Big Spring Clean website at www.tidynorthernireland.org/big-spring-clean .

At an early stage, decide on the arrangements to removing the waste at the end of the event - your council may agree to help by collecting waste or providing a skip. You might want to do a straightforward litter pick — or you could choose a theme or set a challenge. Think of ways to make your event as much fun as possible — some groups organise a history tour or fun activities such as building bird boxes. Choose a well-known spot where everyone can meet up.

Visit the site beforehand and carry out a full risk assessment — an examination of the risk that could harm you or your volunteers.

Your local council may be able to offer support by providing litter pickers, refuse sacks, gloves or even a skip. Take their advice on where to legally dispose of waste.

Have your equipment ready beforehand — eg litter pickers, refuse sack, gloves, wheelbarrows, rakes and shovels. Bring a first aid kit and anti-bacterial wipes.

You may need safe containers for broken glass and sharp metal as they will break through refuse sacks.

For full details of how to plan your event visit www.tidynorthernireland.org/big-spring-clean/planning-your-clean-up.

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