Interview: Coveris Winsford’s Angela Capstick makes a difference in the local community

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Angela Capstick

Stores Operative, Coveris Winsford

Angela Capstick, a Stores Operative at Coveris Winsford, recently applied for a grant from the Coveris Community Fund (CCF). Angela is not only a valued member of the Coveris team but also one of the founding members of the Moulton Wombles, a dedicated group of volunteers who get together to complete litter picks in the local community. Thanks to the grant, the Moulton Wombles are kitted out with new equipment to help their efforts.

At Coveris we’re very keen on giving back to our local communities so we chatted to Angela to find out more!

Hi Angela! How long have you been working for Coveris, and what does your job involve?
I started at Coveris Winsford in 2020 and worked in the HR department on a temporary basis before applying for the job I’ve got now. As a stores operative I am responsible for managing the engineering stores and purchasing parts and supplies as required.

What are your favourite parts of the role?
It’s a really varied role - every day brings something new and interesting, and the people I work with are great.

You recently received a grant of £300 from the CCF. Why did you apply for the money and what will it be used for?
About three years ago I set up a local litter-picking group called the Moulton Wombles in the village where I live. We meet for an hour on the first Sunday of every month, apart from in the winter, and collect as much litter as we can. Cheshire West and Chester Council, who come and take away the rubbish we’ve collected, has given us litter pickers and bags, so we’ve used the grant to buy bag hoops and branded high-vis vests. We look like a proper, organised group now!

Was it easy to apply?
Very easy! I saw a poster at work promoting the CCF and the funding available to support community activities and sent an email explaining how much we’d like and what the money would be used for. This is the second grant I’ve applied for. The first one was to help us create a wildflower meadow. We invited our primary school and pre-school children as well as community groups: Rainbows, Brownies, Cubs and Scouts to the local park to plant some seeds and watch them grow - it’s still going today.

What impact has this grant had?
Firstly, it makes us look more like a community group and secondly, it helps raise profile of the Moulton Wombles which will hopefully encourage more people to join. Previously we’d cobbled together some high-res vests from different organisations which were generally large or extra-large and not suitable for children. Now we have a wide range of sizes and really do look the part when we're out. The bag hoops are also invaluable. I don't know if you’ve ever carried a bag full of rubbish around, but the hoops make it much easier, particularly for the older volunteers who really struggle. Unfortunately, the parish council can’t afford to pay for equipment like this as it has limited community funds, so it’s been a very welcome contribution.

Where did the idea for the Moulton Wombles come from?
I was on the parish council in Moulton for six-and-a-half years, until I retired a couple of months ago, and would regularly pick up litter while walking my dog. I met other people doing the same thing, so I thought, why not get everyone together and make it more official? 

Have you had a lot of support from the local community?
Obviously it's very weather dependent but I would say the smallest group we've had is about three people and the largest, which was in the summer, is 15. Our volunteers are aged from two to 80 and we get a lot of children from the local primary school volunteering which is nice. After they have been litter picking with us, they are a lot more aware of their local surroundings. You even see them telling off other youngsters for dropping their sweet wrappers which is great as they are the next generation of local environmentalists! Other community groups and organisations are also keen to get involved including the Crow’s Nest Cafe in the village which started providing free drinks as a reward for those taking part.

Have you ever found anything usual?
I'm just trying to think what the strangest thing is! Obviously, we find a lot of empty alcohol bottles, car tyres, scrap metal and clothing. We found a hockey stick once which was quite bizarre. There is an area in the village near the railway tracks which is prone to fly tipping, but the council have to get rid of this rubbish because as it's too heavy for us. 

You must feel very proud of what you’ve managed to achieve?
What started out as just filling one carrier bag while out walking the dog has grown to 12 big bags of rubbish from all over the village. And that's the scary thing – there is so much, but we collect as much as we can within an hour. The children at the primary school are also much more aware of the problem and try not to drop litter. It’s all about bringing the environment into people’s consciousness and encouraging them to think about their impact. I feel like we’re making a real difference so I’m beyond proud really.

Where does your passion for the community come from?
I'm not originally from the area and when I moved to Moulton in 2000 I joined a lot of village groups. My children attended the preschool, so I became a member of the preschool committee and was chair for a while. I was also a school governor and gradually signed up to more and more organisations. I was invited to join the parish council and ended up being chair of that for three years. Although I’ve stepped back to do other things, I’m still actively involved as I really enjoy giving something back to the local community. It’s also rewarding to hear people commenting on how nice the park looks and thinking, I did that. There's also the social aspect: an elderly lady, who had just moved to the village and didn’t know anyone, joined the Moulton Wombles in April 2023 and she's now made a group of friends and who meet regularly at the local café and the WI (Women’s Institute).

Would you encourage other people to apply for a grant from the CCF?
I can only speak from my own experience, but Coveris has been absolutely brilliant. I think the fund is very well publicised internally, so I don't imagine there's anybody that doesn't know about it, but I think there may be some people who don't realise the wide range of projects it can be used for. I think it's a great thing and I would definitely encourage others to apply.

Thank you so much for speaking to us Angela - you obviously do a great deal for your local community. We’re delighted to hear the difference the Coveris Community Fund has made and hope sharing your story will encourage even more people to apply.

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