A load of old rubbish

Written by Fiona Wright, COO of CMS and Director of Ipswich Central.

Today was an Ipswich #itsmystreet clean up day.

As the BID company, every time we run one of these in Ipswich it’s a bit of a three-line whip. Anyone in the office that day has to get involved right through from senior management to interns.

We ask the team to give from half an hour to an hour of their time to generally spruce up the trading environment of our street. Interestingly no one grumbles. We all joke a little about ‘Community Service’ but soon just get on with the job. Even the new guy who has been here a week picked up a broom and did his bit. Slightly bemused but a team player.

Interestingly, and as expected, our team were the only ones out there doing anything on our street even though we have emailed all businesses we have info for and dropped in leaflets.

Here are just some of my observations:

  • We were clapped by one guy – you know the one, the super-cool one in the shades with the patronising smile who then chucks his cigarette end into the gutter. He found it amusing we were doing it. I have a few words to describe him. None of them good.
  • Last time we did this it took two hours. This time it took half an hour as the street was cleaner. Interesting for those who sign up to the Broken Window Theory.
  • Cigarette ends. Thousands of them. If you smoke that’s your choice. I don’t actually care, but please don’t chuck your cigarette end on the floor. It is dirty. Do you do that in your house? I suspect probably yes.
  • Everyone moans about the state of the streets. But do they help? Not on your nelly. Its much easier to moan and grumble than give half an hour. How about this? Save the moaning, it probably totals more than half an hour anyway and use it to get involved.
  • Why only us doing it? In my humble opinion, this sort of thing has to come from the top. If I ask my team to do something I have to be willing to do it myself. Do some people think they are too important? Yes I think so. Too busy? Of course. Not in the right clothes? Can’t ruin the designer shoes. Do people think it is someone else’s job? Yes, probably. What a load of old rubbish. Get stuck in and help make a difference.

Thanks to all the individuals driving this forward in the town, it makes a difference and the biggest thing for me is the fact the team are proud of the work they have done. #itsmystreet


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