High Sheriff Charles Barratt joins Norfolk binmen

The High Sheriff of Norfolk has been getting stuck in with Broadland's recycling crew in and around Norwich.

Charles Barratt joined the recycling team on their rounds to thank them for their work during the big freeze at the end of last year. Mr Barratt said: 'It was a privilege to meet the crews and get just a tiny insight into what they do for us while most of us are still tucked up in bed. Their work over that freezing Christmas period was nothing short of outstanding.'

Their day started with bacon butties at 6.30am at the Frettenham depot and Mr Barratt then spent the morning getting his hands dirty collecting wheeliebins as a crew member with the council's contractors Veolia Environmental Services.

Mr Barratt wanted to pay tribute to the 'outstanding' work of the collection teams who shrugged off temperatures as low as minus 15C some mornings in December to ensure as many as possible Broadland bins were emptied on time. The crews would frequently have to thaw out their wagons' bin lifting mechanisms before their day's work could start, yet even at the height of the Arctic weather missed fewer than 1,200 out of 54,000 collections.

Mr Barratt added: 'I just wanted to say a personal thank you, and on behalf of the people of Norfolk, how much we appreciate their service.

'Watching them in action was a work of art, and all done with great humour.'

Mr Barratt's day also included some time spent at the NEWS waste recycling centre at Costessey, where he saw recyclables being sorted.

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Councillor John Fisher, Broadland's portfolio holder for environmental policy development, also thanked the Veolia teams for maintaining the doorstep service and said: 'There were some exceptionally cold days over that period and we are grateful not only to our contractors but also to our residents for their patience and understanding.'

Have you been out helping the local community? Local Life would love to hear from you. Contact Local Life editor Donna-Louise bishop on donna-louise.bishop@archant.co.uk or call 01603 772438.