Saturday 29 August 2020

Map of all Stoke virus deaths to 15th August 2020

Office for National Statistics - All "Deaths involving COVID-19" from the start of the pandemic through to 15th August 2020, for the Stoke-on-Trent city area.

Saturday 8 August 2020

It's the city's clean-up weekend!

This weekend is the launch of the city's clean-up, championed by our champion litter picker Debi Allbutt of Norton. It's just as well to do it now — early on Sunday morning or Monday — because it'll be wet once this fine spell is over. Monday tea-time will see the start of several days of rain and thunder. On the clean-up The Sentinel reports today that: "Community champion encourages Stoke-on-Trent residents to get involved in big clean up".

"It's literally so easy to take part in 'View From Your Door'. We're just asking everyone to head out to their street, pick up litter, pick up weeds, and make things look more presentable. It only needs to take 10 minutes."

Debi is encouraging people to share their before and after pictures on social media in their local community Facebook groups.

Great stuff. If you can take part, according to my research the best place to buy a good litter-picking stick in Stoke is Ableworld in the Leek Road near Hanley. There you want their "Classic Long" picker, which when last seen were re-branded Helping Hand sticks. You can also get a Helping Hand stick from Amazon, though it's long and you won't get it to fit in a pick-up locker. The other thing that's useful are flexible gloves and a firm stick about 12 inches long. Any bit of old tree will do, as long it's not going to snap. Roll the stick into the top of the bin-bag, to give you a "handle" to hold that keeps the bag open for popping the litter in with your stick.

Obviously the city could not have the usual Spring cleanup this year, so there's likely to be a lot to do. A week ago I did a long stretch near me, which needed to be done. But perhaps the city has more than can be done in a few hours on a Sunday morning or Monday lunchtime. The next best time of year for a mass litter-pick would then be just after Bonfire Night. In that still-crisp early November weather when the wind is usually very low, and the ground and its litter is not too moist and soggy yet.