Patricia Kavanagh-Brown (Trustee) runs a chartered accountancy practice which helps companies to stay in control and achieve their future goals. She is passionate about the arts.
Patricia believes in the enormous potential within each human being which, with education, aspiration and vision, could be harnessed for so much common good. Instead of using these gifts, mankind so often perpetrates a lot of harm. Our countryside is astoundingly beautiful and our urban areas are expensively designed and maintained, so why do they end up looking like the inside of a dustbin? Patricia wants to help this to change. The most ghastly litter she has encountered was a tube train which looked like the aftermath of an alcoholic orgy: two abandoned vodka bottles swilling alcohol over food cartons, beer cans and their contents. Once a week, she picks up the contents of one neighbour’s dustbins that end up strewn over the road and front gardens. She wonders if a packaging tax, which is ring-fenced and applied solely to keep the country litter- and chewing-gum free, would help.
Christopher Bates (Trustee) enjoyed a full career in the Royal Engineers, serving in many parts of the world. On his retirement from the Army in 1999, he joined the Dulverton Trust, initially as Deputy Director, assuming the role of Director in 2003. The Trust is a grant-making foundation, supporting a large number of charities mainly in UK, but also in East Africa. He visited many hundreds of charities to assess their applications and gained a close understanding of the charitable sector. He has been a Trustee of a number of Royal Engineer charities and remains a Trustee of the Army Central Fund. He is committed to supporting communities through his chairmanship of Tunbridge Wells & District Citizens Advice Bureau, and his Trusteeship of the Mines Advisory Group (MAG), which clears land mines and unexploded ordnance around the world. This could be described as the clearance of lethal litter, and MAG takes great pains to consult local communities to decide on priorities for the clearance operations.
Christopher got to know CleanupUK because the charity twice succeeded in persuading the Dulverton Trustees to provide support. He has become increasingly irritated about the scourge of litter despoiling towns and countryside and has developed much personal sympathy for CleanupUK’s work as well as an appreciation of its value in helping to develop community spirit in deprived areas.
Christopher has appointed himself the unofficial litter warden of a footpath which runs past his house in Tunbridge Wells. On his regular dog walks he has removed a lot of litter – mainly fast food wrappings – but the most unusual item he has come across was a smashed-open metal cash box.
Phil Beddoes (Chair of the Trustees) is a Chartered Environmental Health Officer who has recently retired as Head of Environmental Services at Tonbridge and Malling Council, Kent. His particular environmental concern is that of litter on roads and public spaces and it is therefore not surprising to hear that he is often seen with sack and litter picker in hand wandering the areas where he lives.
Phil has worked with the Local Government Association as an adviser on litter and local environmental quality issues and was co-opted to work with Defra when environmental legislation was being reviewed.
He has supported many community groups whilst working in local government and recognises the synergy that comes from local people working together to improve where they live and play.
Phil has been a volunteer for a number of other organisations including Samaritans and Crisis.
As the son of a farmer, Phil has from an early age seen the damage that can be done by litter in the environment and how it can badly affect areas of beauty. He also sees that litter on our streets, the living rooms of our communities, says a lot about who we are. An opportunity to help communities deal with litter in their areas in the way they want to do it is the reason why Phil has wanted to be a trustee for CleanupUK.
Dee Bingham (Trustee) previously worked at Keep Britain Tidy for 22 years and brings a range of experience, with a special interest in the law and legal issues relating to litter. Amongst her roles she ran the charity’s Information Service, managed the Tidy Britain All Party Parliamentary Group and co-ordinated the organisation’s governance.
Dee is a core member of the Defra Civil Society Partnership Network. She’s also involved in volunteer activities closer to home including her local Woodlands Conservation Action Group and litter picks organised by the Local Authority Rangers Team. As a Green Flag Assessor for the Eco-Schools Programme she sees the importance of teaching about the environment from an early age, especially about not littering.
After many years of litter-picking and campaigning, Dee is more optimistic than ever that we can tackle the litter problem. Social networking has made it so much easier to set up a local group, organise clean-ups, keep in touch with supporters and get anti-litter messages across. Websites are available to post news about litter-picks and pictures of events. All of which spreads the word that littering is not acceptable and, furthermore, that thousands of volunteers are working hard to look after the places they love.
Having supported CleanupUK since its early days, Dee sees the organisation as a leader in bringing people together to tackle litter – and fostering good community relations in the process.
Mick May (Trustee) has spent over 2½ decades working in the charitable world, as a trustee, an executive, a chair and a patron.
In 2003 following a 20 years working in the financial markets he took up full time employment in the voluntary sector as Executive Director of a Groundwork Trust, of which he remains a trustee to this day. In 2005, he established Blue Sky, often described as “the only company in the country where you need a criminal record to work there”. This wins commercial business in the nation’s supply chains which it delivers by teams made up wholly of ex-offenders; over the subsequent decade it has employed more than 1,200 individuals. In February 2013 he stepped down to pursue a range of trustee and chairing roles.
With a background in local government procurement and a keen appreciation of how an improved environment can make life better for everybody, he is excited at joining the board of CleanupUK.
Mick was appointed OBE in the 2016 New Year’s Honours.
Anastasia Bloom (Trustee)
Anastasia has spent most of her career in international banking focusing on business development in emerging markets. Her job has taken her to far flung corners of the Earth – the US, Latin America, Africa, Middle East, Russia, where she has had an extensive exposure to local cultures and practices. Anastasia benefits from breadth of experience having dealt with governments, regulators, large corporations, small enterprises and start-ups. Her current focus is on the wealth management sector and capital introduction with ethical investments playing a big part in her work. Anastasia is passionate about improving living standards. She is on the Board of Trustees of Homes for Haringey where she sits on the risk and audit committee and is closely involved with the borough’s housing supply program. Anastasia is passionate about art and theatre. She lives with her family in North London.
Anastasia wholeheartedly supports CleanupUK’s mission of strengthening communities through litter picking activities. Unfortunately there is a common preconception that poorer areas are less clean and tidy. There isn’t any reason why it should be this way and, by creating a force from within, CleanupUK achieves results that pure enforcement cannot achieve.
We live in an ever more consumerist society with litter being an ugly product of a buy-use-discard mentality. Tackling litter issues goes to the heart of how we live – it is about loving and caring for your neighbourhood, having consideration for others around you and generations that will come after us.
Debbie Purdy (Trustee)
Debbie Purdy is a Contracts Administrator for a construction company based in Essex, currently involved in a major Decent Homes programme installing new kitchens and bathrooms for an East London Borough. The role is varied, very customer focused, with an aim to provide 99% customer satisfaction.
Debbie’s previous experience includes working for East Thames Housing Group for 17 years. Her last role before taking voluntary redundancy was as the Lettings and Voids Service Manager, re-housing residents in need, for example due to homelessness, overcrowding or domestic violence.
In October 2015 Debbie decided to set up a litter picking group in her local area in Woodford, as she had noticed that it had gradually become dilapidated, some roads becoming a particular eyesore, and an irritant in general.
She met with Neeta and together they produced flyers setting out a monthly litter-picking timetable up to December 2016, met with local businesses and door-knocked to gain participants. The first pick coincided with Clean for The Queen, a cold and rainy day but spirits were high and friends were made. A core group has emerged and there has definitely been an improvement in the area. However there is much to be done to encourage more volunteers to join and further door-knocking sessions are planned for September 2016, along with a meeting with the local primary school.