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Gloucestershire Business News

Soft drinks company backs Forest's anti-litter campaign

County employer Lucozade Ribena Suntory is providing further funding for 'Love your Forest', the Forest of Dean's anti-littering campaign aimed at changing behaviour.

The initiative was originally launched in April, 2016 by Lucozade Ribena Suntory, which has a factory in Coleford and environmental charity Hubbub.

Supported by the Forest of Dean District Council, the Forestry Commission, Foresters' Forest, and Wye Valley and Forest of Dean Tourism, it sought to raise awareness of littering and encourage positive behaviour-change within the local community.

Now with a view to broadening the campaign's reach and ensuring its long-term success, Lucozade Ribena Suntory has now committed to funding 'Love Your Forest' for another year

The 'Love Your Forest Impact Report' was recently launched in the House of Commons, sharing insights and learnings that could be adopted by other areas.

Report highlights include:

• The 'Trashconverter' invited people to swap their trash for treats. It has so far visited 64 locations, engaged with over 5,323 people and collected over 186 bags of litter and recycling across the Forest of Dean.

• 'Communitrees', wacky faces designed by school children using litter from the forest floor, were placed throughout the Forest and, in some high footfall areas, saw a reduction in littering by as much as 30 per cent.

• The 'roadside gallery' involved a series of outdoor posters installed on A and B roads with members of the local community holding up messages of pride for our area with anti-littering slogans. Combined with a car sticker competition, roadside littering levels dropped from 6 bags per km to 2.7 bags per km.

Michelle Norman, director of sustainability and external affairs at Lucozade Ribena Suntory, said: "We are delighted by the continuing success of Love Your Forest. We want to ensure a sustainable and lasting legacy is delivered in our Forest, which is why we are funding the campaign for an additional year and will be working with partners to ensure it will run long beyond 2019.

"We hope that the report will provide other companies, councils and organisations with the inspiration and insights needed to introduce their own impactful campaigns in the future."

Trewin Restorick, CEO of Hubbub, said: "We are thrilled to be launching the Love Your Forest impact report, showcasing what has been achieved to-date to tackle the blight of littering in the Forest of Dean.

"Thanks to additional funding from Lucozade Ribena Suntory, we are now to taking on the most successful elements of the project by working with local groups."

Mark Harper, MP for the Forest of Dean, said: "The Forest of Dean is an incredibly special place and we all have a responsibility to keep it free of litter and other waste. The Love Your Forest campaign is a great initiative and I am really pleased it has secured the extra support it deserves from one of the Forest of Dean's excellent employers."

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