Building a volunteer network to crack down on mindless littering

Posted on: Tuesday, March 22, 2022

During the last two years we have all changed the way we live our lives as a result of the pandemic and of high profile news coverage of the Climate Emergency.  More people than ever are out walking, visiting parks and enjoying green spaces but unfortunately noticing litter, spoiling those beautiful areas, as they do so.

While the District Council is doing all it can to ensure that our district is kept beautiful, working tirelessly cleaning up litter and mess and fining those who make it, we can all have a part to play in the fight against the mindless littering of our lovely district.

Councillor David Lloyd, Leader of Newark and Sherwood District Council explains, “We want to build a volunteer network.  A network of passionate individuals and groups who, like us, cannot tolerate the mindless littering that blights our beautiful district.  As a District Council, we can do so much but we know, if we all pull together, we can achieve so much more.

“More people than ever are asking the Council for equipment so they can help step up our efforts at tackling mindless littering. With many volunteers preferring to go out on their own to litter pick while dog walking or during the school run rather than joining a larger group activity, we want to formalise our volunteer network to make it as easy as possible for our wonderful community to tackle littering.”

We are all aware of the Climate emergency facing the world at the moment.  The District Council is committed to ensuring that Newark is cleaner, safer and greener and in taking that one step further and building a network of volunteers, to work alongside them, is hoping deliver their ambitious greening agenda and reduce the litter in our district.

In the upcoming month the District Council are launching a MyAccount platform. This platform will allow residents to create an account to access District Council services that are relevant to them.  Once set up with an account residents will be able to organise local community litter picking activities. The District Council will then arrange the delivery of litter-pickers, high-vis vests, litter hoops and bags, as well as agreeing the location for the collection of waste.

This will enable the District Council to develop their volunteer network to map and understand what parts of the district are benefiting from community involvement such as this, but crucially it will help them to understand what parts are not so that they can focus on building community activity in those areas.

The District Council will look to purchase 400 litter pickers, hoops, bags and high vis vests, which will be available to those volunteering via the MyAccount app.

Councillor David Lloyd, Leader of Newark and Sherwood District Council continues, “Our district is huge, at over 650km² it is the largest district in Nottinghamshire. While our environmental teams work all over the district we need volunteers to work with us in a coordinated way so we can direct our services to the right places at the right times.

“That is why we are calling on even more local residents to become part of our volunteer network.  We currently have around 100 event organisers, community groups and individuals who take part in volunteer litter picks, with a district the size of Newark and Sherwood, even more volunteers are required to further help support our environmental team in a more efficient and manageable way.

The new MyAccount platform will contain lots of personalised information for residents relating specifically to their area, for example personalised bin collection calendars. In addition to organising community litter picks individuals via the platform, as the scheme develops it is envisioned that those who sign up to this new initiative will be able to take advantage of other environmental improvement offerings.

Councillor Lloyd concludes, “Our aim is to get around 400 regular volunteers who will be supplied with equipment to litter pick their local area. The equipment being issued on an ongoing loan basis with the resident holding the kit for as long as they require.

“We will continue to fine all those people we spot littering and I encourage you to report any litter to us, via the report feature on our website.  But our volunteer network will not only bring our community together, it will help us tackle an issue that frustrates us all.”

Earlier this year, the District Council launched its Green Rewards app which rewards you for small changes you make in a bid to becoming greener.  This could be walking instead of taking the car or taking part in a litter pick.  Further, the District Council hopes to recognise individuals and groups who have made a difference in their communities through some form of annual award and recognition.

If you want to find out more about Newark and Sherwood’s Green Rewards scheme visit here:  

To report littering online visit

If you wish to arrange a community litter pick prior to the launch of MyAccount please email