Volunteers Clear Litter at New Memorial Woodland

A team of volunteers from Positive Pathways in Leigh Park made the most of the sunshine by clearing litter from Memory Park on Portsmouth Water’s proposed reservoir site this week (Tuesday 20 July).

Arranged by Positive Pathways, in partnership with Portsmouth Water, the team of litter pickers managed to remove five large bags of rubbish from the site near Leigh Park.

Positive Pathways is a volunteering organisation based in Leigh Park which supports local people over the age of 18 to increase their confidence, build new skills, and for some, find employment.

The group previously supported Portsmouth Water by planting new trees at Memory Park in December 2020 to give local communities a place to visit for quiet reflection, as well as to provide a new woodland corridor for wildlife to move around the wider area.

Bob Taylor, Chief Executive Officer for Portsmouth Water, said: “We are really grateful to the volunteers at Positive Pathways and I would like to thank them for all their hard work in creating and maintaining this beautiful memorial woodland.

“Not only does it offer a quiet place for the community, it also provides a vital new corridor for wildlife to move off the proposed reservoir site and into the wider area.

“This is just one of the many measures being taken by our team at Portsmouth Water to create new habitats and ensure wildlife is not present when work begins on site.”

Beverley Palmer, of Positive Pathways, said: “I am very proud of our small team for all the hard work they have put into creating and maintaining the memorial woodland. They have worked with Portsmouth Water staff to transform this area into a place the whole community can come to enjoy.

“It is a lovely spot, particularly on sunny days, and the volunteers and I thoroughly enjoyed our time litter picking.”

Memory Park is a memorial woodland situated on the edge of Portsmouth Water’s proposed site for the Havant Thicket Reservoir.

Havant Borough Council and East Hampshire District Council have both resolved to grant planning permission for the development of Havant Thicket Reservoir, following planning hearings earlier this month.

The next step is for legal commitments to be finalised with the local authorities, before full planning permission is granted, potentially this summer.

The reservoir would secure much-needed supplies for the water-stressed South East and protect Hampshire chalk streams from over abstraction, as well as provide a new, green leisure hub for local communities, a wetland for birds and be supported by the creation and improvement of about 200 hectares of woodland on and near the site.