January 2020 Update

New Members and Recycling - rubbish not members!

2020 is off to a great start with the induction of new members to our club. Having moved to the Lakes within the last few years Jane & Tony Sutton have made many friends locally and it is a pleasure that through our social meetings and regular get togethers over the last few months they have got to know us at AK Rotary and have decided to join us as full members – a very warm and sincere welcome!

The club enjoyed entertaining presentations from two engaging speakers at different meetings in January. Firstly, ‘My Life in the gutter’ by Archie Workman

Life changed 7 years ago for Archie, a former ship building engineer and regional business development consultant, during which time he had helped lure The Great North Swim to Windermere, when he agreed to accept the role of part time lengthsman to local parish councils.  Now he lends his skills and meticulous attention to clearing out blocked drains, tidying back overgrown verges and lovingly restoring old black and white road signs and other civic metal items to full glory.  Despite admitting to qualifying for a bus pass, his fitness and passion are evident as he speaks of the challenges of handling heavy crusted and rusted drain covers and severely blocked drains which require determination and ingenuity with his array of useful tools to clear.

Not only has Archie’s  fame spread as a trouble shooter for  parish councils, placing him much in demand,  but his interest and knowledge of drain covers and their origins has led to multiple interviews with TV, newspapers, his story & photos on calendars, and a hectic schedule of local speaking engagements resulting in celebrity status. 

So much so that he holds such titles as Celebrity Drainspotter, Dullest Man in Cumbria and Anorak of the Year 2019.

We concluded the month with another very successful ‘Open Meeting’ at the Ambleside Parish Centres Wesley Room

‘Recycling – Rubbish Matters’

Andrew Vickers, SLDC Waste and Recycling Manager, gave a spirited talk to a packed room in an open meeting.   The audience were keen to hear the ins and outs of the kerbside recycling process and posed many questions about the right and wrong practice of domestic recycling, which demonstrated their commitment to wise recycling.  In short Andrew’s message was, keep it simple, use your common sense on what is recyclable and what is not.  If in doubt put it in the general waste grey bin.  Black plastic food trays, coffee cups and tetra packs fall into that category, as notably do plant pots and polystyrene.  The rigorous technical sorting processes after collection are capable of handling loads which have been adequately, if not precisely sorted, to the point that SLDC residents returned an enviable 0% of loads rejected through contamination in 2019, proving that what the community is doing is generally correct.  Keep up the good work!

With lots in the club pipeline we look forward to a busy February with the local heats of Youth Speaks and our annual Bridge Drive & Afternoon Tea.