A community-led campaign to keep North Tyneside looking spick and span is returning for its tenth year.
The Big Spring Clean aims to combat litter and dog fouling with help from local businesses, schools and community groups.
Pupils from Richardson Dees Primary School, in Wallsend, helped launch the campaign, which runs until May 13.
They were invited to take part in a clean-up of the school grounds alongside the council’s environmental mascot Waldo the Wonderdog and his friends.
There was also a competition held among the students to give a name to one of the mascots, with the winner – who chose the name Dotty – receiving a prize from Smyth’s Toys Store.
Also, as part of the effort to keep their local area looking spick and span, pupils from Marden Bridge Middle School took part in their very own clean-up, filling more than seven bags of rubbish from the paths behind Morrisons.
Coun John Stirling, cabinet member for the Environment, said: “The community involvement we see every year from the Big Spring Clean is fantastic. So many of our residents get involved and the pride they take in their local area makes our job so much easier.
“I’d like to say a big thank you to students at Richardson Dees Primary School and Marden Bridge for the enthusiasm they’ve shown and the effort that went into their clean-ups.”
The campaign invites the public to take part in council and community litter picks.
Tony Markwell, Head of Prevention & Education, Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service said: “It’s great to see the community being so supportive in keeping their local environment looking good.
“However, it also helps the fire service too. The less litter and rubbish there is, also means fewer opportunities to create deliberate fires.
“Sadly we know that Spring can see an increase in deliberate fires so it’s important that any litter is removed as soon as possible.”
This year’s Big Spring Clean is part of the council’s Love Your Street campaign, encouraging residents to take pride in their local community.
There are a number of ways residents can get involved with this campaign, including litter picks and flower plantings.
The council will support residents in their efforts, supplying litter picks and bags for any street clean-ups and offering to collect any rubbish collected afterwards.
A resource pack to help residents coordinate and promote their events can be found online at www.northtyneside.gov.uk
To find out about council-run litter picks, or to organise your own, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 0345 2000 103.