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Akiva schoolgirl's mission to preserve 600-year-old Whetstone covered in rubbish
A ten-year-old schoolgirl is on a mission to prevent the history of her hometown being buried in rubbish.
Tammy Berlinsky wants to preserve the historic Whetstone, after which the place in Barnet is named, after she found it covered in bags of refuse from nearby shops and restaurants.
The stone, located outside The Griffin pub in High Road, dates back more than 600 years and was used by soldiers and families for sharpening swords and knives down the ages.
Aviva School student Tammy, of Oxford Gardens, learned about the historical significance of the stone during a school project three years ago.
But she was left embarrassed and downhearted when she took a school friend to see the landmark, only to find it submerged in piles of bin bags.
She has come across the same eye sore on numerous occasions ever since.
Now the young history enthusiast wants to protect the stone and she recently wrote to Barnet Mayor Councillor Melvin Cohen requesting his help.
She said: “When I saw it piled in rubbish I thought it was such a shame. They should look after it. It is a historic landmark and it’s very nice.
“If more people knew about it, they wouldn’t be dumping rubbish on it.”
Tammy would like to see a sign installed displaying information on the history of the stone, as well as some small fencing to stop rubbish being dumped there.
She said: “It would mean a lot to me because it will be a sense of achievement and I can show people the stone with pride.”
Tammy’s mother Shelley has been supporting her daughter with her campaign and says more people should be made aware of the stone’s significance.
She said: “It is not easy to find and I bet most people don’t even know it exists. It made us really proud that we live in an area with a bit of heritage and history.
“At the moment it is just squashed between cars and rubbish and it is such a pity. I want to be able to show Tammy that something can be done about things like this when you put your mind to it so hopefully the council will act.”
A council spokesman said: “The council is keen to see that local landmarks are preserved, this rubbish will be cleared and enforcement officers will be investigating where it has come from.
“They will advise traders on how they should be correctly disposing of their waste and we will continue to monitor the situation. We are also ensuring that it will receive additional attention from the town centre keeper.”
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