For Explore Goes Green Day, Claire Fitzgerald got creative and did something rather unique…a litter pick at Reading Festival. Read her blog below:
“I was disappointed when the date for the Explore Go Green Day was announced as I realised it clashed with a few days Annual Leave I had booked. Months ago I had agreed to take my teenage daughter and son to Reading Festival for the weekend but thought I could pledge to do a litter pick on site as I knew there would be loads around. We decided to wait until the last day to do it as we were sure there would be lots of litter around for us to make a real impact. So with bag in hand and four teenagers in tow we set about our area of the campsite picking up a huge amount of empty cans, water bottles and cardboard. In total we collected over 14 bags of rubbish which was taken to the recycling point a few hundred yards away.
In other areas of the site I was pleasantly surprised how ‘Green’ the organisers were. On entering the campsite at the beginning of the weekend they had loads of volunteers handing out clear recycling bags with either cans of beer in for the over 18 or cans of Pepsi Max for the under 18’s. This was to try and encourage people to have a recycle bag by the tents and to try and use it as much as possible. There were recycle stations all over the place and throughout the weekend you could continue to exchange full bags of cans / bottles and cardboard for beer or Pepsi which certainly motivated some people to do their bit!
In the area where the bands were playing they had a great idea of incorporating a deposit on cups and water bottles within the price of the drink. At the bar when ordering a pint a 10p deposit was included in the cost of the drink and 20p for bottles of water. These could then be taken to a refund point within the arena where they were exchanged for money. A constant sight through the weekend was people walking around with a bag full of water bottles or great big stacks of cups that had been picked up from the ground. Obviously there was a financial motivation for people but it certainly did the trick, I didn’t see a single beer cup or water bottle on the ground. If they can adopt the same scheme for the food vendors I’m sure the site would have been practically litter free!!!
All in all I think we did well in collecting our 14 bin liners full of rubbish however it would have been good not to have to do it at all with everyone taking reasonability for their own!”