I was born in London in 1967 and for most of my life I have lived in Kent - also known as the Garden of England ???
Since the age of 15 I have worked for a specialist fit out and finishing contracting business operating in the UK construction industry. Today I now own and run the company I started with all those years ago. I have always prided myself on looking after people and providing a top quality, first class service and great end product to my clients.
I am proud to be British however when I look around Britain I can't see what's great about it any more. Littering has increased by 500% since the 1960s and 48% of the population admit to dropping litter. We now spend £1bn per year tackling the problem which clearly does nothing as we are now officially the 3rd most littered nation globally behind countries in the developing world.
This is a shocking statistic and purely down to a lack of education and awareness. This has in turn created a culture and attitude across the UK of not caring and has affected the very authorities who's duty it is to maintain standards and set examples. Effectively they now broadcast a message that says "we don't care" and this fuels the problem.
Go anywhere in the UK and you will see examples wherever you look. Blue and white police DO NOT CROSS tape left for years around trees and cast aside car crash debris in bushes and the sides of roads. Road signs left smashed up, never repaired or not readable because they are never cleaned. Street nameplates left to rot. Highways teams leaving mess everywhere they go by throwing cones, barriers, flashing lights, sand bags and temporary roadworks signs into hedges and verges. Country lanes, slip roads, by passes and motorways swimming knee deep in litter. The list goes on and on.
None of this is to do with budget cuts.
As a result, these low standards attract litter and that litter then attracts more litter so the UK has effectively become trashed and neglected with us all becoming "litter blind" due to the ever increasing low standards that we just accept as the norm.
The problem is now an epidemic that has a grip on the nation like cancer. If nothing is done, the problem will worsen and our children and their children will be swimming in filth, living in unsafe conditions and paying through the nose for the privilege.
In 2015, I decided to tackle the UK litter crisis in a way that had never been done before. As a child of the 70s I remembered public information films at school and Keep Britain Tidy logos on every crisp packet and sweet wrapper. Whilst that worked back then, it was clear that it had no effect today and I knew a new approach was needed so I created LitterGram, a free and simple to use app for the UK's 40m smartphone users along with a 2 minute animated education film that could be shown to the kids at school assembly.
My idea is simple, make hating litter cool and highlight the issue using a social media app that will connect the citizens of the UK with all 433 councils so that together we can put the great back into Britain.
LitterGram was born - Snap It. Share It. Sort It.