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Shopping guru Mary Portas leads Liskeard locals on spruce up

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: October 29, 2012

Mary Portas tries her hand with a giant vacuum cleaner

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Shopping guru Mary Portas hit the streets of a Cornish town in a bid to spruce it up and help revive its fortunes.

Mary was in Liskeard to urge the community to pull together in the Big Clean Up event.

Earlier this year Liskeard was chosen as one of 12 Portas Pilots by the Government and scooped £100,000 to help give the town centre a make-over.

On Saturday and Sunday local residents were out in force to help make the scheme a success.

Some gave forlorn-looking buildings a welcome lick of paint while others planted flowers.

Gavin Davies, chairman of the Liskeard chamber of commerce, welcomed the clean-up as a good idea.

He said: "We are hoping to make the town a nicer place to be.

"I think it's a brilliant project and a great opportunity for Liskeard to show what people can achieve when everyone works together."

The event was filmed as part of Mary's Channel 4 show which is due to air next spring.

Part of the scheme includes shops being rented out without charge to encourage more trade in the town.

Local businesses including the Co-op and Boots have helped to pay for the project.

Banks have also signed up to provide business mentorship to help new shops start up.

A spokesman for the show, said: "We wanted the whole town to get involved. There was lots to do and many hands make light work."

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