A WASTE management business has pledged its support to a homeless project in Cirencester.

CSG – one of the UK’s largest waste management companies which operates a depot in Cricklade has collaborated with ‘The Big Yellow Bus Project’, providing free waste collection.

Gerry Watkins from Cirencester recognised the challenges that homeless people in the area faced and started ‘The Big Yellow Bus Project’ to try to help, converting an old double decker bus to provide beds, sinks and cooking facilities for homeless people.

An HGV driver and warehouse worker by trade, Gerry started the project independently but has had tremendous support from the community as word has spread about the project.

He had to raise £30,000 to get the bus up and running. Gerry said: “I’m so grateful to CSG for its support – regular collection of waste is vital to keep this project going.

“I started The Big Yellow Bus Project in September 2017 after I read about a homeless man having his tent set on fire. I wanted to do my bit to help.

“The bus itself has seven beds – two female quarters and five male beds, with a kitchen and chill out area. It offers a warm and dry safe place to stay.

“Hopefully it will help people change their lives and I hope to convert more buses in the future.”

Thanks to donations and fundraisers, the converted double decker bus is now a safe and secure shelter for homeless people to use.

David Cashmore, CSG’s regional manager, said: “We have specialist sewage treatment plants and drivers working across the country.

“Thousands of households trust us to keep their septic tanks and cesspits in perfect working order and when we heard about this amazing local project, we wanted to do our bit to help and agreed to empty the facility’s toilet for free.

“As a business, we take corporate social responsibilities seriously and actively engage with a number of charitable organisations to lend our support and backing to a range of worthwhile projects.

“Our aim is to give back to the local communities we serve.”