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One man's 30-year duty cleaning up the Great Wall

China.org.cn | Updated: 2017-04-25 13:08

One man's 30-year duty cleaning up the Great Wall

William Lindesay poses for pictures after the cleanup event at the Jiankou section of the Great Wall, which was held on April 22. [Photo/China.org.cn]

"Leave a place better than you found it." It is a simple philosophy, but one that William Lindesay holds dear. He led 20 volunteers to help clean up the Jiankou section of the Great Wall on April 22, which was also Earth Day.

"He who cares is the owner," William said in the opening remarks of the cleanup event. "The Great Wall belongs to China, and is also one of the greatest structures in the world. Everyone has a responsibility to protect it. Every day should be Earth Day," he said.

Trained in geography at the University of Liverpool, William has been captivated by the Great Wall of China since he was a child when he first discovered it in an atlas. His passion has led him to China three times, and he walked 2,470 km exploring the Great Wall during the 1980s before settling down in China in 1990.

During the past three decades, he has spent most of his time walking the Great Wall and has grown and developed his own efforts to protect the cultural relic.

The garbage on the Great Wall has increased over the years. William and his friends collected 288 bags of garbage last year.

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