Merthyr Tydfil Litter Hero
1976. Daniel Lewis
Daniel Lewis, aged 17, from Merthyr Tydfil, has removed over 40 tonnes of litter from his local borough, and working with his local council and police force has launched an innovative fly-tipping prevention scheme, installing over 30 solar-powered CCTV systems near fly-tipping hotspots.
Disheartened by the sight of fly-tipped waste on a huge scale in the surrounding Welsh valleys, Daniel decided to begin a campaign to clean up the area in January 2021 and continues to run regular group events encouraging local residents to get involved. His initiative has now largely driven fly-tippers out of the area, and he is continuing to collaborate with local authorities and the police to pursue prosecution for offenders.
In a personal letter to Daniel, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said:
“Removing over forty tonnes of litter from Merthyr Tydfil and the surrounding valleys is a fantastic achievement.
“I know you have also created an innovative way of preventing fly-tipping, by working with your local council and police to install solar-powered CCTV systems.
“So thank you for all that you are doing to restore the countryside to its natural beauty and to help your community take pride in the place they call home.”
“I feel extremely honoured to be put forward for a Points of Light Award.
“Illicit dumping is a modern day pandemic which is sadly on the increase. My aim over the past two years has not only been to clean up and prevent fly-tipping in my local community but also to highlight this issue and raise awareness to the fact that this behaviour is illegal, financially crippling and hazardous to wildlife and our environment.
“This is not a legacy that future generations should have to suffer.
“I am so proud and humbled to have been recognised for this award and accept it on behalf of my local community and individual businesses that have encouraged and supported me every step of the way.”