New project helps Sunderland residents reclaim their streets

Mayor of Sunderland, Councillor Lynda Scanlan and Denise Sanderson (left), with Mrs Sanderson's daughter Diane Gimeno
Mayor of Sunderland, Councillor Lynda Scanlan and Denise Sanderson (left), with Mrs Sanderson's daughter Diane Gimeno
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Hundreds of householders have been visited in a bid to help residents reclaim their streets and rid them of litter.

The Reclaim Your Lanes project is about supporting residents, encouraging neighbourliness and was set up with backing from Sunderland City Council's East Area Committee which oversees community projects in the Doxford, Hendon, Millfield, St Michael's and Ryhope electoral wards.

Clean Streets is an Echo campaign calling on the city to be kept litter-free.

Clean Streets is an Echo campaign calling on the city to be kept litter-free.

More than 400 properties have been visited and received advice on helping to keep streets clean, reporting fly-tipping and keeping bin lids closed.

The Millfield work has concentrated on streets off Hylton Road, near St Mark's Church. Work is also underway in the St Michael's ward.

Dozens - 137 in total - also signed up to a Reclaim Your Lanes pledge and entered a £100 shopping voucher draw. Denise Sanderson has been named as the first winner and has received her voucher.

Read more: Fines, clear-ups and action - what Clean Streets has achieved so far in Sunderland, and how you can get involved

Mayor of Sunderland, Councillor Lynda Scanlan, who is also a Millfield councillor. said: "This is good work from the council and from Groundworks. It's all about a little reminder to householders that we can all do our bit for our streets, our lanes and our neighbourhoods.

"Well done to everyone who does take pride in their neighbourhood, well done to those who signed up, and congratulations to our prize winner Denise."

Denise, of Harlow Street, said her voucher would go towards family Christmas gifts, and added: "It only takes a couple of minutes to make sure that the bins are out properly and to know where and when to report any problems. I feel we've started to see a difference in recent months."

As well as householders, Reclaim Your Lanes is contacting landlords and reminding them of their duties.

An update on the project is being presented to the East Area committee when it meets on Monday at Sunderland Civic Centre from 5.30pm.

Read more: Echo’s Clean Streets campaign hailed as tougher fines for litter louts are agreed

Coun Ellen Ball, a Ryhope councillor and chairman of the committee, said: "The vast majority of residents across our city all help to make sure that their neighbourhoods are kept clean and green.

"By meeting more of them on their doorsteps, we're able to remind and share information on how as a community we can all do our bit. In case they've forgotten, residents receive information on their bin days, what to put in their bins, and how important it is to report fly-tipping."

Nearly 70 households have pledged support in St Michael's and more work on more households is being planned for early in 2019.

Julia Bentley, the scheme's project manager, said: "We have been supporting and encouraging residents’ to look after their local area. We have been engaging with residents to find out what their main issues and concerns around the area are; as well as making sure everyone has the correct information regarding their bins and waste collections.

"We have run a number of community clean ups around Millfield and St Michael's, and have had a great response in the number of people who are coming out and getting involved."

The Echo’s Clean Streets campaign is calling on Wearsiders to be more responsible for their own waste in an effort to build a cleaner, more inviting and more welcoming city.

Anyone who sees items they think have been fly-tipped on a street or green space can contact Sunderland City Council to arrange its removal either by reporting it online at sunderland.gov.uk or by calling 0191 520 5550.