Community acts together to 'clean up' Saltford - Saltford Parish Council

Saltford is known for its historic conservation area and beautiful riverside walks. Unfortunately it does experience littering problems, both by those who do not follow the Countryside Code’s ‘leave no trace’ advice and also as seen following recent flooding (as SPC has raised to B&NES Council’s attention, please find a copy of SPC’s open letter requesting a safer cleaner river here).

Saltford Parish Council would like to thank everyone involved for their efforts to help ‘clean up’ the village in recent weeks. The Parish Council is also pleased to share news about recent actions taken and those planned for coming weeks. As residents are aware, SPC shares concerns expressed to it by residents about litter (and dog waste), and as such welcomes all the efforts currently being made to ‘clean up’ the village.

The week beginning Monday 20th February marked Saltford’s second ‘Clean and Green Week’, and initiative by B&NES Council. Residents may have spotted Saltford’s Cub Scouts ‘Tuesday Tigers’ and ‘Wednesday Wolves’ out in the evenings this week with their torches litter picking. Litter picks and gold bags were supplied by the B&NES Clean and Green Team. Many volunteer parents also helped out, along with Cubs leaders, and together they collected litter from many areas in the village. A copy of B&NES Council’s Clean and Green newsletter for the start of the year, including news and photos from Saltford, can be found at

Mark (volunteer parent helper), Matthew and Edmund of the Wednesday Wolves Saltford Scouts Cub Pack litter picking on Weds 22 Feb

In advance of Clean and Green Week, both SPC and Saltford’s B&NES Ward Cllrs put forward a list of requests for improvements in the village. Since December, SPC and Ward Cllrs have also been encouraging residents to report issues directly to the B&NES Clean and Green Team’s awareness via FixMyStreet. SPC thanks everyone who has taken the time to report areas for action to B&NES Council, and updates on these actions from B&NES Council will be sent via FixMyStreet to resident’s email inboxes.

One action requested by SPC included the issues of overhanging vegetation near the pavement on the A4 Bath Road and also by a parking bay by the river which was obscuring signs and making vehicles park further into the highway. The Clean and Green team have cut these back, making these areas safer and more accessible, and signage easier to see. Residents will hopefully spot a range of similar actions around the village. SPC will look to share other actions by the Clean and Green Team.

Vegetation cut back from the highway and signage, improving safety and access for both vehicle users and pedestrians at this location

SPC was also pleased to know that that the Saltford Wombles are planning their next litter pick on the afternoon Sunday 26 February following the success of their last litter pick in January.

The Saltford Wombles share SPC’s concerns about litter in river side areas, especially following the floods in January, and are responding by taking part in the Great British Spring Clean on 18 March. At the same time, the Great Avon River Clean will be taking place on the river, further to individuals in boats who have voluntarily been removing litter from river bank vegetation over the past weeks.

The Saltford Wombles have shared the following: ‘For those Wombles that are thinking of picking by the river in the interim, please take great care. The banks have been softened and could also be very slippery. Don’t put yourself in danger by being tempted to try and reach that plastic bag in the reeds. It is hoped there will be some waterborne assistance on the 18th March’.

Litter on vegetation by the river bank following flooding in January 2023

Following on from the Saltford Womble’s advice, SPC’s water safety campaign with Avon Fire and Rescue can be seen around the village, including posters at businesses such as the Riverside Pub reminding people about key safety messages including ‘Float to Live’. SPC appreciates local businesses engaging with this water safety initiative and also urges everyone to take care when walking near the river or entering the river. For further information about SPC’s water safety actions please see here.

‘Float to Live’ and ‘Hidden Dangers’ posters displayed by the Riverside Pub, following a project between SPC and Avon Fire & Rescue to raise awareness about water safety in Saltford

SPC has also been contacted by a local paddleboarding group, who have let the Parish Council know that approximately 60 paddleboarders will go onto the River Avon in April to help clear litter from the river banks. They have requested to borrow litter picks from B&NES Council and be provided with gold bin bags for B&NES Council to collect.

SPC is sure that their efforts, along with the participants on 18 March, will be appreciated by all those who enjoy Saltford’s river side areas. As widely shared, following its February meeting Saltford Parish Council requested that B&NES Council takes responsibility for a safer cleaner river in Saltford, including the river bank area where they are the riparian owner. Saltford Parish Council has written an open letter to B&NES Council’s Cllr Tim Ball, Cabinet Member for Planning and Licencing (a copy is available on SPC’s website) and awaits a response.

SPC had cc’d its letter to Wessex Water, and in March SPC was pleased to see contractors from Wessex Water on the river and on the river bank clearing waste following recent flooding.

Wessex Water contractors on 2 March 2023

SPC also regularly reminds those in Saltford to take litter home or to use one of the many bins and gold bags around the village, and has recently reminded dog walkers not to hang filled poo bags from hedges and fences which has been raised as an increasing issue by residents. Information on how to report this if seen to B&NES Council can be found here on our website.

SPC wishes to express its appreciation regarding all the efforts being made to collect litter locally, from the actions of individual residents to organised groups like the Saltford Wombles. Plus it has been fantastic to see so many young people in the village involved in litter picking, such as those doing their Duke of Edinburgh Award who have also chosen to litter pick in village and of course the dozens of children from the Saltford Scouts Cub packs. SPC thanks everyone involved for acting together to keep Saltford looking lovely and for helping the environment too.

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