Keep It Tidy volunteers

We all like to live and work in a clean area, free of rubbish and litter. It’s not just safer for us, our families, friends and pets, however it helps us to make your environment safer.

Why volunteer?

Keeping where we live clean and tidy is the responsibility of us all. Every penny the Council spends cleaning up litter and rubbish is money that could be spent on other valuable services - from elderly care to road repair and education.

That's why under the Your Call programme since 2011, the Council has supported local residents who want to 'do their bit' to keep their neighbourhood clean and safe.

From litter picking a street or local park, to tackling a neglected patch of land, hundreds of Keep It Tidy volunteers are out and about every day, in some part of the borough, making a real difference.

Who can volunteer?

Volunteers from anywhere in Blackburn with Darwen can get involved, either on their own or with friends and family, or by joining one of the established litter picking groups.

How much time do I need to give?
Volunteers can do as much or as little as they are able to do, at a time that suits them.
Get involved

It is easy and simple to become a Keep It Tidy volunteer and to get involved. When litter picking or participating in a community clean-up, please ensure you read the guidelines provided.

Litter picker volunteer

Simply sign up as a Keep It Tidy litter picker on the Lancashire Volunteer Partnership website. It's quick and easy to do, you will receive a free litter picking kit so you can get started straight away. The kit includes a litter picker, gloves, bags and lots more.

Currently there are approximately 2000 volunteers who have signed up as a litter picker, collecting hundreds of bags of litter and rubbish every week. 

Once you have completed your litter pick, you can inform us by filling out the volunteers reporting bags for removal form and we will pick up your collected waste.

Report bags for removal

Community clean-ups

A community clean-up is an organised litter pick event, held by a group of local residents for a certain area such as a back alley. This is a great way for residents to get together to look after their local environment, provides an opportunity to meet and get to know others in your community, as well as providing health and wellbeing benefits.

Organise a community clean-up event with friends and family. We can help by:

  • providing free tools to borrow such as spades and rakes
  • removing rubbish - you collect it, we'll take away
  • keeping you safe - we can provide simple advice
  • getting the word out - we can help publicise your event and help you to keep it tidy afterwards

This can be done by completing the requesting notice for a community clean-up form.

Requesting notice for a community clean-up

Please note the following guidelines when participating in a community clean-up;

We advise that the council is notified at least 7 days in advance of the community clean-up. The team will then provide further guidance, equipment or support, if required.
Any waste due for collection must be placed in an area which is easily accessible by a large caged vehicle and safe to remove. When you notify the team of the clean-up event, they will advise on the best locations of where the waste can be left for collection.

  • any waste collected from the community clean-up event must be placed inside the authorised red 'keep it tidy' receptacles (bags). The team will not collect waste that is placed in other coloured receptacles.
  • the red receptacles are to be used for litter or small items, which can be easily lifted onto the vehicles. Please do not overfill the bags or fill the bags with hard core waste, rubble, vegetation, soil etc.


Further guidance;

  • follow any relevant Government COVID safety advice.
  • wear gloves, appropriate clothing and footwear
  • place any abandoned bins near to the arranged waste collection point
  • please do not remove waste from private land or from inside the boundary of private properties
  • for health and safety purposes, do not attempt to remove any clinical waste e.g. hypodermic needles, asbestos or other hazardous materials. If clinical waste has been identified, you can report dangerous waste online by contacting cleansing on 01254585921

If residents have any bulky items in their property boundary (including black bagged waste) that they wish to dispose of, they can visit the Household Waste Recycling Centres. Alternatively, they can organise a bulky waste collection.

To report an abandoned bin which has been left for a minimum of 4 weeks, please report this to us.

You can also share your litter pick or community clean-up by visiting the volunteer-led Facebook pages Keep Blackburn Tidy and Keep Darwen Tidy.

Clean up
Alley before cleanup
Alley after cleanup