Beach clean battle gets under way in NE

More than 40 volunteers took part in the beach clean-up
More than 40 volunteers took part in the beach clean-up

A recent beach clean in Aberdeenshire marked the official launch of a regional initiative named Turning the Plastic Tide.

The event was supported by local people who managed to remove 2.68 tonnes of marine litter from the beach at Sandford Bay, Peterhead, in three hours.

More than 40 volunteers were backed by heavy-lifting machinery provided by Aberdeenshire Council.

Amongst the litter, volunteers reported masses of plastics, with some areas of the beach estimated to contain 1000 pieces per square metre.

Larger items included sections of thick rope and netting which had been tangled and submerged in the sand.

Crawford Paris, organiser of the event and beach litter officer in charge of the project, was delighted by the determination and turn out of volunteers.

He said: “I am absolutely thrilled with the number of people who came along and contributed to the clean.

“The volunteers were cleaning at an impressive rate, quickly creating a heap of bags full of litter.

“It really was inspiring to see the energy and, in particular, the passion of the younger participants involved.

“Having the additional machinery made all the difference as heavier items have proved difficult to remove in the past.”

Organisers say the volume of support is what Turning the Plastic Tide aims to provide to North-east communities facing beach litter problems.

There are plans to hold an increased number of clean-ups and educational talks across the region over the two-year duration of the project.

Mr Paris added: “I am excited to be working with a community who are becoming empowered to care for their beaches and I am looking forward to collaborating with other groups and individuals helping to manage the places that are special to them.”

For more information and to get involved in future beach cleans, visit the website at egcp.org.uk or go to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and search for “Turning the Plastic Tide”.