06 Jul 2022

Errill students in Laois join the ‘Picker Pals’ movement

Errill students in Laois join the ‘Picker Pals’ movement

Students at Errill National School donned their high-vis jackets and grabbed their rubbish pickers to help clean up Errill roads last week.

Laois County Council ran an initiative through St Columcille’s National School, Errill, to promote environmental awareness to the students. The initiative took place alongside the worsening issue of dumping taking place in Laois roads and bogs, particularly in Garryduff.

Each class had a specific day to clean the roads, they would return to school and give the equipment to the next group the following day.

Altogether the students reportedly cleared over 200-250 bags of rubbish.

Peadar Cleary, Chairman of Errill Tidy Towns, was involved in the project. Mr Cleary and the Tidy Town members approached the council on running the initiative through the Errill school.

“Normally we have a clean-up Laois week, but we couldn’t with covid. It was left to individual tidy towns to do their own thing. We kept our social distancing and adhered to all public safety guidelines.

“The response from students and parents was fantastic. We heard that from running it, there, was wider litter picking outside of the programme, and it helped people become more in-tune with their own locality. The programme is still going on and we plan on tackling the bogs soon,” he said.

Because the amounts of rubbish collected was so cast, private companies were involved in the removal of the bags.

Mr Cleary said that they are searching for additional members of the Tidy Towns Committee.

“We would love for more people to join Errill Tidy Towns. They can find us on Facebook and contact any group member, the more the merrier,” he said.

Laois County Councillor John King discussed the event at this week’s Borris-In-Ossory Mountrath Municipal Meeting.

“I’m from Errill myself and it is a very picturesque village.

“It was a fantastic initiative that Laois County Council ran through St. Columcille’s National School.

We supplied the children with high visibility jackets, rubbish pickers, along with other equipment.

It was a wonderful scheme.

The purpose of the scheme was to show the children the importance of protecting the environment and protecting our local bogs. I want to thank the students in Errill and Errill Tidy Towns for all of their hard work.”

The scheme was called “Picker Pals” and was highly successful.

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