The UK’s Growing Litter Army: Croydon Council’s Street Champions

The UK’s Growing Litter Army: Croydon Council’s Street Champions

The UK’s Growing Litter Army: Croydon Council’s Street Champions

A community litter picking campaign in Croydon has been recognised with a national award. The campaign ‘Don’t Mess With Croydon - Take Pride’ has seen 381 ‘street champions’ organise 21 litter picking events and with the help of 215 volunteers, they managed to collect 300 bags of litter in just one month earlier on this year.

Their achievements resulted in Croydon Council being crowned as the best local authority that took part in the Great British Spring Clean of 2019.

The council was presented with a golden litter picker to recognise its success at Keep Britain Tidy’s Volunteer Celebration in London last Tuesday.

The council has praised everyone who has given their time to work for the campaign and spread the anti-litter message. A local councillor said that its street champions work tirelessly throughout the year to clear tonnes of rubbish from areas across the borough.

The CEO of Keep Britain Tidy said that local authorities do such an important job in empowering people to look after their own communities by providing litter equipment, support, and advice, and by disposing of the bagged up litter. She added that Keep Britain Tidy wanted to recognise Croydon council’s for the amount of time and effort they put into spreading the anti-litter message and getting people involved.

What do Croydon’s street champions do?

Croydon council’s street champions are a network of local people who have volunteered to work alongside the council to encourage others residents and local businesses to recycle more, manage waste responsibly, and report and reduce environmental crime like fly-tipping.

What does a street champion do?

  • They report incidences of fly-tipping and littering
  • They organise litter picks and clean-ups in the community
  • They take before and after pictures of the clean-ups to show the difference that can be made
  • They help their neighbours keep their gardens tidy
  • They help local businesses who need information and advice on disposing of waste and recycling

How does the council help?

The council helps organise clean up events, assists with risk assessments, and provides equipment like litter pickers, brooms, gloves, and bags. It also removes the waste that’s been collected, gives advice and support to local residents and businesses on waste management and recycling, and shares clean up successes on social media.

Schools and youth groups can also get involved in litter picks. If you live in Croydon and you want to find out more about becoming a street champion, email