Otley in BloomOIB_BIBloom_LOGO.jpg

Growing civic pride in Otley

Great British Clean up CANCELLED

Posted by billa on February 12, 2018

Sorry, everyone this litter picking even has been cancelled due to the weather forecast


You are invited to ..... the Great British Spring Clean.

We aim to tidy up the town and the countryside at the start of March.

  • Friday 2nd of March.  Meet at the Maypole, Manchester square at 11am until 1 pm with refreshments back at the Core.
  • Saturday 3rd of March.  Meet at the cafe in Wharfedale Park Cafe (Wharfemeadows) at 10am until noon.
  • Sunday 4th of Mach.  Meet in the car park at Gallows Hill nature area at 10am until noon.

Pickers and bags provided, but you may want to bring your own gloves.  Let us know you are coming so Otley council can supply enough equipment by sending email to Otley Council admin(at)otleytowncouncil.gov.uk or drop into the Core and book your place.

Keep Britain Tidy

Details on Otley website


Where does all our rubbish go?

Posted by billa on January 30, 2018


OIB was interested in where our rubbish goes and visited the Leeds RERF (Recycling and Energy Recovery Facility ) at Cross Green. The RERF takes all the waste from our black wheely bins. The building is based in a heavily industrialised part of Leeds and towers 7 stories above the locality. After the waste is delivered (6 days a week) it is shreaded and they take out the ferrous and non ferrous metals along with a range of plastics letting the remaining mixture of cardboard, paper, waste food, plastic film and companion-animal poo flow into a massive chamber which then is burnt to feed a steam turbine generating enough electricity to power 22,000 homes.


This means that nothing goes to landfill, the waste only sits around for less than a week in the massive chamber so does not generate smells. The output from the chimney is washed to remove the nasties apart from CO2. The building has a massive green wall all down one side which softens the site. It has an interesting mixture of plants including Berberis, Harts tongue fern, common Hazel. There are three planting layer areas with a mix of native, wildlife friendly and ornamental species of shrubs perennials, grasses and bulbs. In total there are 110,000 plants used to create this green wall. Plus the odd bee box, bird nest and yes a gardener with a cherry picker.


The RERF is relatively new and can be visited (see website) and they also offer education support for schools/colleges etc.

Christmas Tree Festival

Posted by billa on November 29, 2017

Please come and see our tree at the Christmas Tree Festival at the Parish Church from 6th to 9th December. There will be 40 trees to see, all set up by local charities and community groups, so bring some coins to support your favourites.  There will be musical performances and the cafe will be open.

For more information see Otley Christmas Tree Festival.



Free daffodils at the Buttercross 10th Nov

Posted by sstanwell on November 09, 2017

We are having a stall under the Buttercross tomorrow, Friday 10th November.  We will be giving away daffodil bulbs to the lovely folk of Otley as a thank you for everyone's efforts contributing to Otley's success in gaining a Silver Gilt Award at the Britain in Bloom Awards.  Please take some and plant them, all we ask in return is that you send us a photo or selfie when they flower. 

We will be there from 10am - 2pm or until stocks run out See you there!

Britain in Bloom; Otley win Silver Gilt

Posted by billa on November 07, 2017

Thanks to the sterling work of the people of Otley we achieved a Silver Gilt award on our first attempt at Britain in Bloom, well done everyone!  You can find the details at Britain in Bloom

Chippendale 300

Posted by sstanwell on October 27, 2017




Vote for us…


We have applied for £1000 funding towards the creation of a carpet bedding flowerbed in Wharfemeadows Park to be part of Otley’s town wide “Chippendale 300” celebrations next year.


Please help us secure this vital funding by voting for us.  You can cast up to 10 votes.  Here’s what to do;

Thankyou  xx



Window Dressing Competition Results

Posted by sstanwell on July 28, 2017

Large Window

1st:   Casa Vitae


2nd:   Patisserie Viennoise

3rd:   Jenni's Dresser

Highly commended:   Picture This

Small Window

1st:   Leafy Couture



2nd equal:   The Donkey Sanctuary

2nd equal:   PDSA

Highly commended:   Flowers by Lynn


Congratulations to all our winners.

Other entries were Harriets and Soft Options in the large window category, and Wharfedale Embroidery and Oxfam in the small window category.


Britain in Bloom Judges are coming

Posted by billa on July 20, 2017



We need you to help us prepare…
Sunday 30th July at 10 am, meet at the Buttercross for a pre Britain in Bloom judging litterpick, deadheading planters and weeding.
Tuesday 1st August at 6.30pm, meet at the Buttercross for a pre judging litterpick, deadheading planters and weeding.
BUSINESSES – Please sweep and weed in front of your premises.
Everyone remember to water your plants and try to make our town look as lovely as it can on 2nd August.
Thank you!
Award ceremony on 27th October.

Bremner Street corner

Posted by sstanwell on July 19, 2017

Bremner Street corner got a tidy this week.


Eleven people (must be a record) turned out on Sunday morning to help tidy up the garden at Bremner Street, opposite Asda.  We litter picked, pruned, weeded, and added a few colourful plants to the front to cheer up passing motorists.

Loneliness of the short distance litter picker

Posted by billa on July 19, 2017


Sometimes I pick litter with other people but every week I pick upper Bradford road on my own. I only pick 20 litres of rubbish so sometimes I get as far as the bus stop (200 metres) and sometimes I get as far as beyond the golf course (400 metres), but I only get as far as the golf course once or twice a year.


This pick got me to the railway bridge. Luckily no nappies, but the usual mix of 10 plastic bottles, 2 glass bottles, 8 cans, 8 polystyrene fast food boxes, 5 takeaway coffee cups, 3 bits of car, 6 cigarette packets, 1 sock etc.


25 June, I had to leave the large piece of steel, the large sheet of wood and the sandbag, maybe another day.


A week later, 1st July:

Good news, Leeds council swept the road this week so should be less to pick up.  Still the piece of steel and wood went before the sweeper turned up.


Ah well.

8th of July:

Well would you believe it I managed to get to the golf course this week, yeeha.



15th July, well after I managed to pick up two 10kg steel rollers and take them to recycling centre, just dumped in the street.  I found only a limited amount of litter but many many little bits of plastic.  The good news I managed to get beyond the golf course and link up with the part of Bradford road that Leeds council litter picks.  Wow!

Interesting to see what happens next week...


23rd July, for I change I decided to litter pick south into "Menston in Bloom" territory because this no-mans land can become over looked.  More countryside than town, improved fencing is controlling litter but also traps litter.  Still a chance to get a lot of plastic bottle out of wire/hedges.

Where does all the broken glass come from?  Next time take a brush and pan.


30 July; well it finally stopped raining, chance to nip out and clear up.  Sad to see that Mr Coke had managed to put so many plastic bottles along my path.  Since we are in a holiday season you might like to click on on Coke choking the sea .  Still I managed to fill the box and again got to the start of the Golf course. Yipee...

Otley looking really tidy, thanks to everyone who is making an effort, it really shows.




5th August.  Down to the golf course again.  Must be because the people of Otley are making such an effort.  A couple of people thanked me for picking litter, always nice, thanks. 

Just started counting how many pieces of plastic I throw away everyday, frightening figures, I average 4 pieces.  How many do you?


19th August; litter levels well down this fortnight, maybe due to less traffic on the roads in the holidays?  I tried to clear up the litter into Menston and down to the golf club.  It would be nice to tidy up the north side of Bradford road but since there is no pavement it is too dangerous.

A few more broken bottles about, why do people smash them?



More litter picking

Posted by sstanwell on July 18, 2017


Ernie and Ian



Bradley and Grandad John


We do have female litter pickers too, but so far they haven't provided us with a photo.  More pictures to follow...

Open gardens in Otley

Posted by sstanwell on June 21, 2017

Celebrate the joy of gardening by visiting a selection of private gardens in Otley which will be open on Sunday 25th June from 12 noon to 5pm.  Get inspiration, or simply soak up the atmosphere of being in a beautiful space.  Cream teas will be available in two of the gardens.  A map of the gardens will be provided.

Tickets are now on sale, £3 per person or £5 for a family ticket.

- purchase in advance from Courtyard Planters, 9 Westgate, Otley, LS21 3AT  Tel 01943 462390

- purchase in advance online at www.shopappy.com

- purchase on the day at Newlands, 131a Bradford Road, or Park House, Wharfemeadows Park, Farnley Lane.

All money raised will be split between Friends of Otley Lido and Otley in Bloom.


Here's a sneak preview of one of the gardens to whet your appetite.