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People who took part in community clear-up event

Going wild for the wildlife in Chipping Norton

Local residents and Cottsway staff have been working together to improve a small communal wild area in Chipping Norton.

On Tuesday (20 October) a team of volunteers came together on Withers Way to help tidy the area by litter picking, removing fly-tipped rubbish and cutting back overgrown bramble. They also helped to increase wildlife opportunities by planting over 400 spring bulbs. Three new bird boxes will also be installed.

Care was taken to ensure that social-distancing rules were adhered to with groups of 2-3 people working in different areas of the site.

Vicki Paxford, who took part and is Communities Manager at Cottsway said “We’ve not been able to hold many community clear up days this year due to the Coronavirus lockdown, so this was a great opportunity for people to meet each other and help instil a sense of pride in the area.”

“It was lovely to get outside and do something hands on to help improve this small patch of wild space that we own. We worked alongside our grounds maintenance contractor, Ground Control, and they will be maintaining the site longer-term. But by involving the people who live nearby we’ve been able to ensure that the site will be managed in the best way possible for the local wildlife in the future.”

Francis Coates, a local sculptor who has lived in the area for 40 years, also helped with the clear up. He said “I’m delighted that this area is so widely used by the local wildlife. It’s a little haven between the houses and you regularly see frogs, hedgehogs, squirrels and birds – I’ve even seen a Green Woodpecker.

“It’s been great to get involved and work alongside Cottsway and Ground Control. I feel like I’ve done something positive for both the wildlife and my neighbours and have had a bit of an outdoor workout in the process! I’m looking forward to seeing what moves in to the new bird boxes and all the new bulbs flowering next year.” 

As well as getting involved in the community activity, local residents were also given the opportunity to dispose of their own garden waste and small household items during the clear-up.

If you’re a Cottsway customer and would like to organise a similar event in your neighbourhood next year, see our webpage: Community clear ups