Belsize volunteers clean up local litter - as streatery licence is extended

Volunteers in action. Picture: Belsize Village Business Association

Volunteers in action. Picture: Belsize Village Business Association - Credit: Archant

Residents and councillors cleaned up Belsize Village on Sunday after the licence of the area’s streatery was extended until January.

The event was part of the Great British September Clean by Keep Britain Tidy. Picture: Belsize Villa

The event was part of the Great British September Clean by Keep Britain Tidy. Picture: Belsize Village Business Association - Credit: Archant

On September 27 volunteers set about removing litter from the Belsize streets as part of a nationwide effort - the Great British September Clean.

The local event was organised by the Belsize Village Business Association (BVBA) whose streatery licence - which allows restaurants and cafes to serve customers outside in Belsize Terrace - was extended until January 2. Parasols and “environmentally-friendly” electric heaters will be used.

BVBA’s co-coordinator Robert Stephenson-Padron said: “We are overjoyed to be able to continue providing amazing food and superb service to local residents and visitors.”

Bob added on the street clean: “Our strong turnout demonstrates how Belsize Village has increased social cohesion during the global pandemic to promote the common good.”

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Belsize resident Dr David Rose said: “We were spurred on by many positive comments from passers-by and hope we inspired people to look after the streets in their community.”

Belsize councillor Luisa Porritt praised the street clean and welcomed the extension of the “popular” streatery but challenged the council for a lack of notification over the licence extension which she claimed “fits within a wider pattern of ward councillors and the local community being excluded from consultation about significant changes to the area”.

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Cllr Porrit said: “It was great to get out and clean up the streets of Belsize over the weekend.

“This community-led initiative shows how much local residents care about our area, although it would be preferable if Camden Council did a better job of keeping our streets clean in the first place.”

Camden Conservatives’ leader Cllr Oliver Cooper said the litter-pick typified the “community-led approach” in Belsize Village and its streatery.

The Hampstead Town councillor said: “Not only has it thrown businesses a lifeline, but it’s cleaned up what had been one of the biggest rubbish eyesores around and made the streets clean and pristine.”

Adam Harrison, Camden Council’s environment lead, said: “I’m glad Camden has been able to extend the Belsize streatery’s licence until January - it has proved a very successful enterprise.

“Camden’s streateries are an important part of helping hospitality businesses, especially as restrictions increase.

“I was glad too that the council and Veolia supported the weekend’s clean-up, and last month worked with the streatery to reduce cigarette litter.”

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