The only cure for litter is us: Keep Up The Clean Up with McDonald’s (AD)

cure for litter

This post is part of a paid project with McDonald’s UK and BritMums, promoting McDonald’s Keep Up the Clean Up campaign encouraging local communities to take action and work together to tackle litter in their area.

Litter is big news. We all know by now that litter is a huge environmental concern. Yet still nearly half the UK population (48%) admit to dropping their litter. The truth is, when it comes to littering, in my book – there’s just no excuse. The hand that comes out of the car window and just drops their lunch wrapper like it’s of no consequence whatsoever. The person that couldn’t wait another few steps to find a bin. One thing’s for sure – the only cure for litter is us.

That means – not dropping it in the first place. But the other cure for litter is us actually being proactive and picking up litter. That’s why I’ve been so happy to be part of McDonald’s Keep Up The Clean Up campaign.

Being part of the only cure for litter

Did you know that McDonald’s has been collecting litter dropped in the local area around their restaurants since 1982? Their litter patrols and clean-up events walk around 150,000 miles a year, keeping the UK litter free. How good is that?

Last week, I headed down to one of the twice yearly litter picks they organise at McDonald’s Sidcup – one in Spring and Autumn. The morning was open to the whole community – no matter whether you’re a resident, student or business – and was a wonderful way of bringing people together to do good and make the place they work and live a more enjoyable and cleaner place.

It was a buzzing vibe and truly fantastic to be part of such a great turn out. I spoke to so many inspiring people on the day. As well as the McDonald’s staff who were volunteering there were also volunteers from Mencap, Sidcup Partners, as well as the MP for Old Bexley and Sidcup James Brockenshire all lending their support to the cause.

cure for litter

And look here I am down at The Green in Sidcup – the location you all voted for over on my social media channels!

It’s clear McDonald’s is an important part of the local drive to raise environmental awareness but not only that, they also take action too. The enthusiasm shown by the staff volunteering to clean up was catching.

Bill, who has been a McDonald’s franchisee since 2014 and owns seven franchises in total shared how important keeping the local area litter free is to them, “Litter picking is something we’ve done from day one. It’s a great gathering and a way to show our responsibility to the community and get everyone involved.”

cure for litter

Meanwhile, Coral, a member of staff volunteering that day, shared how this was her fourth litter pick, “It’s great that it gets you into the community and helps to keep the environment tidy. We find a lot of general rubbish to fridge freezers and even car tyres!”

The bigger picture

I have to say, I really do admire the way that McDonald’s is walking the walk, not just talking the talk. Since 2015 McDonald’s has installed recycling units in over 1,000 of their UK restaurants, so it’s easier to separate paper cups and plastics for recycling. Their paper cups are sent to specialist recycling centres in the UK who make different recycled products from the fibre and plastic lining.

They have also set themselves a target of zero waste sent to landfill by 2020. Most of their restaurants actually reached it early, in 2017. Well done guys! Extra greenie points for the fact that they send their general waste to waste-to-energy power plants which reduces CO2 and the use of fossil fuels. Impressive stuff.

So what did we find on our clean up?

A heck of a lot! There was endless amounts of plastic everywhere, cans, containers, cigarette butts, drink cartons, takeaway boxes, bottles, clothes and shoes and here’s the weirdest thing I picked up….another litter picker! We could have gone on for days. As you can see, we collected bags and bags of litter.

I really hope the above shows just how important it is that we
look after our local environment, and inspires both individuals and companies to be the change they want to see when it comes to keeping our local areas litter free and enjoyable. 

Look out for the next litter pick happening in a McDonald’s near you soon!


This post is part of a paid project with McDonald’s UK and BritMums, promoting McDonald’s Keep Up the Clean Up campaign encouraging local communities to take action and work together to tackle litter in their area.



  1. This is so awesome. I remember doing litter clean ups as a child and I always enjoyed it. It’s such a great way to care for the environment and glad to see McDonalds doing great things like this!

  2. Oh yes, I’ve heard about the fantastic work McDonalds having been doing. As others have said, it’s a great initiative and it’s so good to see a company actually being active in helping to reduce litter. Come on litter bugs… you know where the bin is!

  3. I can’t stand litter bugs. I have been known to pick up other people’s litter off the street. My kids have also been drilled never to drop litter – their pockets are always full of rubbish because they have been taught to put rubbish in their pocket if their is no bin around.

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