A GROUP of generous do-gooders has given back to society by cleaning up some of Barrow's litter-filled streets.

Volunteers from Zest Community Action Group gathered on Hollywood Retail Park, Barrow to clear piles of rubbish on the grass verge between the retail park and Tesco on the A590 stretch of road.

More than 19 bags of rubbish were collected within an hour by the dedicated team of volunteers.

The Mail’s Big Clean campaign, run in conjunction with The Westmorland Gazette, aims to encourage local communities to take pride in the areas where they live.

Sponsored by Kimberly Clark, Spirit Energy and South Lakeland District Council, the Big Clean appeal has called upon schools, community groups, individuals and local businesses to do what they can to clear up any litter strewn patches of land.

This could be helping to clean a park that is starting to look messy. or it might be picking up items that have been carelessly discarded.

Among this week's dedicated volunteers was former mayor and town councillor John Murphy.

He said: "I'm extremely proud of my town.

"As a former mayor and councillor, I would hope other people respect their town and environment.

"We cannot expect the council to do all the cleaning up in the town

"Other people need to get involved too."

Mr Murphy said there has been a general rise in litter-dropping in the past few months.

He said: "There does seem to be a general rise in people abusing the car parks by littering and dog fouling.

"But people are becoming more environmentally and socially aware.

"Overall, people need to learn to respect their town.

"We're so lucky to live in such a beautiful town and people should respect it."

Mr Murphy said there needs to be more deterrents for litter bugs.

"Other towns issue a £75 fine for dropping cigarette which I think we need to do to.

"Even small things like dropping a cigarette has a massive impact on the environment.

"I am encouraging the council to use more enforcement and give more powers to officers out on the streets to target litter bugs.

"Lets finally put an end to ridiculous lifestyle.

"If people just take an hour out of their week to join litter picks they will see a dramatic improvement in their lives and also in their town too. It's about everyone helping each other for the sake of the town."

To get involved and organise your own litter pick email vanessa.sims@newsquest.co.uk.