DS Smith playing their part in Keeping Britain Tidy
Since announcing DS Smith as the official sponsor of Keep Britain Tidy’s Green Flag Award Scheme, our sites have been enthusiastically getting behind this exciting new initiative.
Kettering, our Packaging Divisions sheet-feeding plant situated on the edge of the quintessentially English town of Burton Latimer, is one of the sites actively getting involved.
When the partnership was announced, the team at Kettering were eager and wanted to be ‘tenacious’ and ‘responsive’ in their involvement; two of DS Smith’s company values.
Ahmet Huseyin, warehouse operative at the Kettering plant, said, “Like me, many of my 60 colleagues live, with our families, in the towns and villages that surround the plant. We’re all proud of our surroundings but, with local government budgets tight, there’s concern that our village parks and green spaces are starting to fall into decline. We feel it is important to preserve these places for future generations.”
Working together for our environment
DS Smith shares a very similar ethos with environmental charity and anti-litter campaigner Keep Britain Tidy, licensee of the Green Flag Award scheme.
Launched in 1996 and supported by the UK’s Department for Communities and Local Government, the scheme rewards the UK’s best parks and green spaces. It aims to encourage investment to raise standards and reverse decline.
The partnership will extend Keep Britain Tidy’s reach as DS Smith sites across England help businesses and communities up and down the country to develop quality local green spaces and, in doing so, achieve Green Flag Award status.
Kettering joins local clean up
Ahmet explains how the process started, “After reviewing and improving the tidiness of our own site, we reached out to the nearby village of Barton Seagraves. Having seen posters about a cleaning day put up by the local church, I thought it was a great opportunity to engage with our community to make a positive difference.”
On 28 March, around a dozen DS Smith staff joined the community cleaning day. “During the day I overheard someone comment how nice it was for a local company to care, which was really heart-warming. Despite a number of international companies having sites in the vicinity, few support the local community – my community”.
“During the course of the day, we cleaned a five-mile radius around the village, including pathways, parks and green spaces. It was a productive and very worthwhile exercise”
Kettering’s Green Flag Pledge
Kettering’s plant manager Graham Coles and human resources manager Julie Coles are leading the site’s involvement in the partnership. They are committed to ensuring that not only will the Plant achieve a Green Flag Award but, with their help, other green spaces in the local community will too.
Proud to be Keeping Britain Tidy
Across DS Smiths four divisions, other sites have begun their journey towards their Green Flag Awards projects:
- Bolton Recycling depot is working with ‘Friends of Longsight Park’. Volunteers from the site recently helped widen an overgrown footpath, planted a large flower bed and repainted the park’s weathered furniture
- Plc’s Head Office London is in conversations with the neighbouring Phoenix Gardens, as is Blunham Packaging with a local RSPB nature reserve to develop an onsite lake
- Plymouth Packaging is working to improve an onsite allotment as is their Featherstone site on a piece of land adjacent to the site
- Sittingbourne Paper is in discussions with Sittingbourne Century Park to work on a project
After extending the programme to all sites in the UK, DS Smith plans to involve our customers in a bid to help them achieve their own Green Flag Awards.