EnviroMET Cleanup of Batcliffe Woods takes centre stage during Students' Union Activities Festival
Activities included coppicing, pruning trees, cutting back branches, removing waste and litter.
Katie Pittman, a second year geography student who braved the cold to assist the cleanup effortcommented: "I'm here because I feel strongly that as a student of Leeds Met I should do something positive and give back to the local community."
Mary Frankland project co-ordinator for Enviromet (Leeds Met Students' Union Environmental Volunteering Project) was equally as positive about the day, "The project will hopefully make a huge impact on the way Leeds Met students are viewed by the local community in Headingley. By taking responsibility for the woodland, and by working alongside resident associations and local charity groups such as The Conservation Volunteers, students will begin to feel a part of the area in which they live."
Leeds City council representatives got their hands dirty and were also on hand to help out. Christopher Baird, Environmental Services Co-ordinator at LCC, took a break from picking up litter to talk about the day and the positive impact initiatives like this can have on both the local and student communitiesm, "This is the first time we have managed to get a task together which involves students, council and three different resident groups. Mary Frankland whose role at Leeds Met Students' Union is supported by Leeds City Council has done an amazing job in bringing this event together and I look forward to working together with her in the future on similar initiatives.
"Events like this one genuinely demonstrate the desire for students to get involved in a positive fashion within their local communities and also shows a wider concern for key environmental issues such as those around waste management. Bringing students together with local residents can only help to heal what can at times be a difficult relationship," he added.
Local resident Jim Kieran who lives on St Chads Drive and has been a member of the Becketts Park residents association, was one of a group of residents hard at work in the Woods. He said it has been refreshing to see students engaging with local residents groups and to see people from different groups coming together. "I came down here to help today because I walk through this wood most days and it will be nice to give it a new lease of life. We are delighted to be working side by side with the students of Leeds."
The Environmet clean-up of Batcliffe Woods formed part of a week-long Activities Festival co-ordinated and led by the students of Leeds Metropolitan University alongside officers from the Union. The Activities Festival aimed to highlight the broad and diverse range of activities and opportunities on offer at Leeds Met Students' Union to all students across societies and volunteering.