A movement called Clean for the Queen hopes to get 1 million Britons involved in a big clean-up weekend ahead of the Queen’s 90th birthday this year. And many Brits are not too happy.
Clean for the Queen was established by Adrian Evans, who was the Pageant Master of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee River Pageant in 2012. “What better present could we all give her than a clean country,” he said.
The ‘anti-litter’ campaign will be implemented in the UK in the months before the Queen’s tenth decade celebration on 21 April and her birthday in June.
The official Twitter page for the campaign offers a countdown to the big clean-up weekend on 4–6 March and says, “Cleaning is a great way to build team spirit: clean up with your office team!”
“Our ambition is to create a community-inspired, grass-roots mass action event – one that will become a recurring annual clean up. We feel that marking the Queen’s 90th birthday with the inaugural clean-up is a wonderful way to kick start it to life,” said Evans.
However, response to the initiative has been scathing, with Brits accusing the campaign of trying to get them to do unpaid work. The #CleanForTheQueen hashtag has been running rampant on Twitter and many people have expressed their dissatisfaction of being treated as “peasants”, “serfs” and “minions”.
“Peasants! Serfs! Don’t look after your environment for your own sake; do it for the biggest benefit claimant of them all,” tweeted Lesley Bremner.
“Get outside my minions and #CleanForTheQueen I want those streets sparkling so I can ride my Golden Carriage,” Twitter user Celestine tweeted.
Even the British republic movement has become involved, tweeting, “Instead of #CleanForTheQueen, we should clean up our democracy, ridding it of its hereditary and unelected positions once and for all.”
Despite the backlash, there were some people who defended the campaign. Sam Tennant tweeted, “Why are people so angry about #CleanForTheQueen? Just pick up your rubbish cause you want a clean country and get tf over it.”
What do you think of the campaign? Do you see a problem with citizens being asked to help clean for the Queen’s birthday?