A COMMUNITY day to highlight work going on at Calais Woods and the surrounding areas was held on Saturday.

The event was organised by the Save the Calais Woods Wildlife group, who were joined by other local bodies working to improve their surroundings.

Martin Willcocks, from the group, was pleased to see local politicians come along too.

"We had the litter-picking group the Duloch in Bloom project, and they were doing some planting of seedlings," he explained. "The three of us had come together to let people know the things going on in the community which they can hopefully benefit from.

"There was a steady flow of people at the stalls just stopping for a chat and seeing what was going on. We had councillors Derek Glen and James Calder turn up for the litter-pick and Jim Leishman and Alex Rowley and Ross Patterson came along and hung around pretty much for most of the time, which was good.

"We have to keep people informed with the amount of planning applications coming through so it helped to have maps and things. The stalls gave people an idea of what is proposed in the area so it was good in that aspect."

Before the community day, around 25 volunteers joined the Calais Wood Wombles for a litter pick at the East Wood and collected more than 30 bags of rubbish.

Jude Rae, from the group, was delighted with the turnout.

"It was fabulous," she said. "I had done a presentation to the club on Tuesday and invited them and was not expecting anyone to come but quite a few members did. We had a couple of folk from Fife Street Champions and the rest were locals.

"The area we did on Saturday was the West Woods in the Calais Muir site. There are lots of drinking dens up there and youngsters are taking cans and bottles and leaving it all behind. The other aspect is the developers four years ago left lots of fall bags with are each filled with 60,000 polystyrene nuggets.

"Gradually, we have been taking them off the site. Some have been moved up the hill and we think youths are bringing them up to sit on them. However, they then split and they are all over the place. It is relentless.

"The patience they (the volunteers) had on Saturday was amazing. They were just picking them up ad putting them in the bags.

"We formed the Wombles group after the last big litter-pick in March and so many people turned up for that. It has made such a difference and the woods are so much cleaner.

"We have started to put big bin bags in each of the dens and also around the main paths and they are definitely getting used as well."