A CHESTER footpath has been given a big spring clean thanks to the efforts of community volunteers.

Led by the Upton-by-Chester Living Streets Group, residents achieved a big improvement in a local footpath known as The Twitchell.

Armed with their garden shears and secateurs, together with rakes and spades provided by the borough council, they have recreated a very pleasant, green pathway leading to Upton village, schools and bus routes.

A team of enthusiastic volunteers worked on clearing the path for just three hours during one weekend, cutting back a jungle of branches and nettles that were blocking the way, and filling 30 sacks with green waste, rubble and litter. They didn’t forget wildlife in the process, and left untouched areas on either side for pollinators and small animals, as well as planting wildflower seeds and bluebells.

Sue Stanley from the Living Streets group said: “More and more people are recognising that walking is part of a healthy lifestyle, and it’s better for air quality and the planet than using a car all the time. We want decision-makers to re-prioritise walking, and get streets and footpaths that are welcoming for everyone, as well as helping those who are less able to walk to get about easily”.

Another member of the group, Helen Wilman, said: “In between the annual cuts by the council, paths and alleyways can quickly become overgrown, and it makes a big difference if people living nearby can do a small amount to tidy them up from time to time”.

As well as thanking all the volunteers, Sue and Helen would like to acknowledge the help given by the local PCSO Beth George, the Your Streets team from the borough council, and Chester Zoo.

Everyone taking part said that they really enjoyed doing it, and are proud of the strength of the volunteering in Upton, as shown by this successful event.