Litter Picking with McDonald's #lovewhereyoulive #ad

A couple of weeks ago, on Saturday morning after I had done breakfasts for eight B&B guests, I headed over to Hell Wath in Ripon to take part in a litter pick with staff from McDonald's in Ripon including franchisee, Matt Midwood. Some of you may know that last week I asked my followers to vote for the area of Ripon they wanted to see cleaned up, and this was the area that was chosen. As you know, I am incredibly passionate about the area that I live in, and seeing litter in the countryside really makes me sad. McDonald’s has partnered with Keep Britain Tidy as part of its 12-year anti-littering campaign ‘Love Where You Live’, to encourage local communities to take action and work together to tackle litter in their area.

The litter pick took us through Hell Wath, a nature reserve in Ripon. There were fourteen volunteers in total, including adults and children, some of whom had travelled many miles to take part, and were very keen to give back to the local area. It was really nice to feel like we were making a difference, and many members of the public thanked us as we went along.

The route we took led us through the woods and then alongside the river, it was a stunning walk, and a place I definitely want to visit again. Although the weather was not on our side, it was a wonderful way to spend a morning, and barely any time out of a weekend. Our countryside should be a place to be enjoyed, not an area that is filled with rubbish and waste.  

Increasingly we are being made aware of the impact that our waste has on the environment. Shows on television and stories in the news are trying to shock us into taking action. I think it's so important that we think about how, where and when we dispose of our waste. Is it possible to recycle it? Where will it end up? Is there any kind of re-usable alternative we could use instead? Change is difficult to make, but the impact it could have on our planet is definitely worth making change for. The plastic bag charge seemed like it might be hard, but it has been so simple to make that change. I am definitely going to be looking at our lives and seeing where we can make changes that will have a positive impact. I've already ordered some metal straws for the children, and will work with them to see what else we can do.

Whilst we walked around on our litter pick, we discussed return recycling, where you get money for taking bottles back. One of the volunteers from McDonald’s was from Germany and she said it is commonplace there. We all agreed we thought it would encourage children to recycle more, if they were going to be getting some money for it!

McDonald’s is committed to environmental practices. Their employees carry out daily litter picks around their restaurants in order to combat the issue. Not only that but, McDonald’s has been powering its delivery fleet with recycled biodiesel from cooking oil for ten years. They're also committed to reducing plastic usage and are testing paper straws in restaurants.

As we finished the two hours of litter picking, one of the older children asked if he could do it all again! The children all seemed to really enjoy it, and I wished my children had been there to take part too. It was amazing how quickly the time passed when we were concentrating on spotting rubbish in the undergrowth.

We collected seven bags of rubbish in total. It largely consisted of wine bottles, lager cans and dog poo bags. I was really very surprised by how many dog poo bags we collected. It is a big problem that people don't seem to be able to take their dog's mess with them when they are going on a walk. I hope that all parents ensure that they are teaching their children to care for the environment and to throw packaging away or recycle it wherever possible.

I filmed a video as part of the campaign which you can watch below. It shows you the kind of rubbish we found in the few hours that we were out collecting. It was a great way to spend a few hours.

This post is part of a paid project with McDonald’s UK and BritMums, promoting McDonald’s Love Where You Live campaign encouraging local communities to take action and work together to tackle litter in their area.