Volunteers braved the rain to unveil Brighton's first 'superbin' in Preston Park today (August 9).
The bin has a secret compartment which stores litter-picking equipment for use by volunteers.
It was launched as part of the Mayor's Big Tidy Up event today, and volunteers from the city’s Tidy Up Team were joined by Mayor Dee Simson, environment councillor Gill Mitchell, bin designer Ian Lilley and Cityparks rangers, to test the new bin, and litter pick in the popular park.
Entrepreneur Ian, who had travelled from his home in Manchester, explained how he came up with the superbin design after becoming a volunteer in his local park.
He said: “There weren’t enough tools for everyone, so I thought if we put a box in the park then all the volunteer groups could share and we wouldn’t have to buy any more!”
Trained volunteers are given a code to the bin store, where equipment including litter pickers, gloves and bags are kept.
The bin enables trained Preston Park Tidy Up Team volunteers to arrange events at short notice without waiting for equipment to be dropped off and picked up.
The council launched the Tidy Up Team last year in a bid to encourage local people to help keep their parks and green spaces tidy by taking part in, and organising litter picking events. The scheme is co-ordinated by Cityparks staff and supported by Cityclean and local community groups.
Garry Meyer, a park ranger, said: “The response has been better than we ever hoped with hundreds of local people coming forward to offer their help, and keen to organise and run their own community events.”
The council runs monthly training courses for volunteers to become Tidy Up Team members, so they can safely collect litter in their local parks and green spaces.
As a result, litter picking events are now taking place regularly across the city, run totally by volunteers.
Cllr Gill Mitchell, chair of the environment committee, said: “It’s fantastic that so many residents are coming forward to sign up to the Tidy Up Team projects and help keep our city’s parks and open spaces looking lovely all year round.
“The superbin is a great idea and a welcome addition to the park and its team of hard working volunteers.”