The weekend of 16 & 17 September was the Marine Conservation Society’s annual Great British Beach Clean. Unlike other beach cleans, the focus at these events is to survey and record the types of litter collected as well as clean the beaches.
These events happen all over the country and we organised two events in the Colourful Coast area. On Saturday we headed to St Bees and with a team of 13 volunteers cleared 9 bags of litter, mostly small plastic, cotton bids and bottle caps which had been brought in and pushed up the beach by the recent high tides and stormy weather.
On Sunday a hardy group of 14 volunteers met at Whitehaven’s North Shore and tackled the litter problem there. Lots of fast food wrapping, drinks bottles and cigarette butts were collected here, some of which hadn’t even seen the sea and had blown from the nearby parking areas – a very different type of letter from St Bees. 14 bags of litter were collected in total, along with drums, containers and two disposable barbeques. As with the St Bees event Copeland Borough Council kindly came to collect it all.
All the data was added to the MCS website and if you’re interested in what we found you can follow the links for the survey results from both beaches:
We’ll be organising more beach cleans in future so keep an eye on the events list and come along to help out, we provide all the tools you’ll need and often there’s a cake or chocolate biscuits afterwards to say thank you for getting out to help!