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Issue Date:- 8 September 2008

Encourage one another to follow Lady Brunner...

PEOPLE across the North West join the biggest litter pick in history.  Keep Britain Tidy launched the “Big Tidy Up” with the recreation of a 1954 photo-call.

The charity is calling for a return to 1950s values – when people cared about their environment.

With levels of rubbish on our streets constantly unsatisfactory, the nationwide “Big Tidy Up” will see an unprecedented month-long blitz on litter.  Thousands of litter picks take place the length and breadth of the country. It’s hoped half a million bin bags of litter will be collected. So far 6,000 groups have signed up. The National Federation of Women’s Institutes has pledged support. And thousands of its members are set to take part.

Even before the official launch of the campaign there were 350 clean-ups planned in the North West. It is hoped as many as 1,000 events will take place in total in this region.

More than half a century ago Women’s Institute chair Lady Elizabeth Brunner kick-started Britain’s anti-litter movement. And the 1st anti-litter act was passed 50-years-ago this month.

Last Monday, 2 of Lady Brunner’s great grand-daughters will repeat that very 1st rallying call and echo the sentiments from 5 decades ago.  Madeline Brunner 10 and Marnie Breadin, 9, will kick off the Big Tidy-Up by re-creating their great grandmother’s 1954 photo-call. They will wear clothes from that era and hold placards bearing the very first slogan:- “Please Take Litter Home”.

Marnie Breadin, said:- “We have heard all about our great grandmother and how she started Keep Britain Tidy. We think she was cool to start it all off because she didn’t like litter and we don’t like litter either.”

Phil Barton, Keep Britain Tidy chief executive said:- “The Big Tidy Up will be the biggest organised litter pick this country has ever seen. We are delighted that 350 schools, businesses and community groups in the region have already signed up. People in the North West want to make a difference.  We are turning the clock back to the era of our founding mother Lady Brunner because we want to see a return to 1950s attitudes.  At that time litter was seen as being unacceptable. Unfortunately for a minority of people today, dropping litter seems to have become the norm – accepted even.  If people are fed up with litter in their neighbourhood and want to make their area better, please go to  which is helping communities get together to tidy up their patch.”

The month-long campaign is being run by Keep Britain Tidy and partners: National Federation of Women’s Institutes, British Trust For Conservation Volunteers (BTCV), Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE), CleanupUK, Waste Watch and Thames21.

Environment Minister Jonathan Shaw said:- "50 years on from the 1st Keep Britain Tidy campaign litter is still a big issue. People need to realise that their careless behaviour is ruining our streets and public spaces, when it only takes a moment to drop their litter in a bin instead.  By discarding litter you are breaking the law and could be fined up to £80. It's also a costly business for local authorities, who spend more than half a billion pound a year picking it up - money that could be best spent elsewhere in the community.  I wholeheartedly support the Big Tidy Up campaign and I urge everyone to get involved with the clean up activities in their areas."


THE Meningitis Trust is issuing a warning about the dangers of meningitis as students return to school, college and university this autumn.

The charity - which provides practical and emotion support to anyone affected by meningitis - is urging all parents, students and teachers to be vigilant of the signs and symptoms of meningitis and septicaemia (blood poisoning). Meningitis is an infectious disease that can kill within hours and leave some survivors with severe after-effects including brain damage, sight and hearing loss, and where septicaemia has occurred, limb loss and scarring.

While children under 5 are most 'at risk' for meningitis, teenagers and students are the second most at risk group (aged 15 - 23 yrs). It is estimated that 10% of the population carry the organism which causes meningitis, but this increases to 25% for students. Transmission of this organism is by droplets going from person to person when coughing, sneezing or through close personal contact such as kissing.

Harriet Penning of the Meningitis Trust says:- "Shared accommodation arrangements, sitting in close confines and prolonged exposure to bacteria can all unfortunately lead to an increased risk of infection".

Identifying the signs and symptoms of meningitis can be difficult as they can easily appear like more common illnesses such as flu. The Meningitis Trust is asking people to learn these signs and to trust their instincts if they suspect anything.

The Trust produces FREE life-saving cards designed to fit inside your wallet, which display the signs and symptoms of meningitis. The Trust currently gives out more than 2 million cards each year, but as it celebrates its 21st anniversary this October, it's urging more people than ever to request one and carry it at all times. The card is available free from the Meningitis Trust's freephone 24-hour nurse-led helpline on 0800 028 18 28.

The symptoms of meningitis can include; fever with cold hands and feet, headache, stiff neck, dislike of bright light, drowsiness, joint pain, vomiting, diarrhoea, confusion and in some cases a rash which doesn't disappear under pressure. Symptoms can appear in any order and some may not appear at all.


CHAMPAGNE reception followed by a meal and entertainment by Brendan McCormack, Phil and Loura and local 6 piece band Soul Searchers.   The event will be held on 18 October 2008 at the Floral Hall, Ballroom in Southport.

Guests include Colonel Bryson, OBE TD JP DL and Life President of the Royal British Legion and Major Jan Pilgrim who received the Royal Red Cross Medal last month and has affectionately been called the modern Florence Nightingale.

Mess Dress, Formal or Lounge suits with medals.   Tickets will cost  £30.   Please send your cheques to:-

Steve Hawkshaw
5 Mardale Close

Please make all cheques payable to:- 'The Veterans Fund'.  

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