Volunteers could turn tide on litter

Volunteers are needed
Volunteers are needed

VOLUNTEERS are needed to help clean-up beaches at Rye Harbour and Pett Level as part of the Marine Conservation Society’s Beachwatch project.

Led by Lucy Balmforth and Andy Dinsdale from Rye Harbour Nature Reserve, the volunteers will collect and record the rubbish along a 100 metre stretch on both beaches.

Gathered data will help identify the main sources of litter washed up on these two beaches, and keep the issue of the dangers of marine litter high on the local agenda.

The next surveys are at Rye Harbour on Sunday and at Pett Level on Sunday April 29.

The last beach litter surveys recorded a total of 959 items at Rye Harbour, with the top three items found on the day identified as fishing net pieces, fishing line, and pieces of string/cord.

At Pett Level the volunteers recorded 233 items, with the top three identified as pieces of plastic string/cord/rope, dog faeces and fishing net pieces.

Sadly this trend for finding plastics and dog faeces is mirrored in the national Beachwatch statistics which show an increase of 11% in the amount of dog poo in plastic bags found on the 335 beaches surveyed across Britain.

Lucy Balmforth, Community Wildlife Officer at Rye Harbour Nature Reserve, says these beach cleans, carried out four times a year, are vital: “Beach litter isn’t just unsightly; it can also be very dangerous to both humans and wildlife. MCS is working towards ensuring local communities right up to UK governments work together to try and stop littering at source.”

If you would like to get involved in the clean up contact Lucy Balmforth on lucybalmforth@sussexwt.org.uk or 01797 227784 for Rye Harbour, or for Pett Level contact Andy Dinsdale on strandliner@btinternet.com.