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Boro Hero award for teenage litter picking champion

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A photo of Boro Hero Matthew Rowe

At the age of just 16 Matthew Rowe is already a stalwart in his community.

For the last four years the Middlesbrough College student has been a constant presence litter picking in his Trimdon ward community and across the town as a whole.

And he has also helped remove fly-tipping and contributed to the local environment in other ways such as planting trees.

For his contribution he has been named as the town's latest Boro Hero by Middlesbrough Mayor Andy Preston.

Matthew said: "I got started because I was sick of seeing the amount of litter and flytipping that blights our communities across Middlesbrough, and I started to do something about it! 

"I keep it up because I want to make the area I live a better place for the people of this town and I don't like seeing litter and mess.

"In the future I would love to see some anti-littering campaigns so hopefully it would get the message across to the people of the town to take care of where they live."

Mr Preston said: "Matthew is a star and he's a role model to people from the ages of 16 to 96. Matthew shows real commitment to his community and the whole of Middlesbrough by litter picking almost every day.  

"I'd like to thank Matthew and everyone who helps keep Middlesbrough tidy."

In the two years the Boro Hero awards have been running Matthew received more nominations for the prize than anyone else.

Among those to appreciate his efforts include family and friends, passers-by and even people who have just seen praise for him on Facebook.

Some of the comments include: "He is an amazing young boy and I think he needs to be recognised with a Boro Hero Award so other young people take inspiration from him! What a star Matthew is!"

And also: "Matthew, who is a hard working community lad who works so hard to keep his community and the area he lives in top shape, Matthew commits every weekend to litter picking, painting and sweeping and much more around the Trimdon Ward area which is where he lives."

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