Over 20 members of staff took part in a beach clean at Whitley Bay
Events Manager Laura McGrath offers insight into managing a beach clean – in an area with very clean beaches!
With plastic waste and climate change high in the public consciousness of late, we’ve been keen to run a Quorum beach clean for some time. On a sunny Thursday in September we had over 20 volunteers come along to Whitley Bay beach and help out with a day long clean.
Firstly, I should mention beaches in North Tyneside are VERY clean! As volunteers spread out across the bay, our first thought was, ‘is there actually any rubbish here?’ It didn’t help to see countless council staff a few bits of litter ahead of us at all times.
Yet after that first initial shock (and let’s face it, the news our beaches are lovely and clean is no bad thing) we began looking a little further afield – up the grass banks, behind benches and in nooks and crannies along the promenade and were rewarded with bags and bags worth of litter.
It does raise the question, perhaps its an idea to think outside of the traditional beach clean and explore alternative locations? Woodlands, parks and fields for instance. However, I will say the grass banks and promenade were full of litter once you started looking, and it only takes one day where the wind is in the wrong direction for all this waste to end up back in the sea.
On the topic of the sea, we were lucky enough to be joined by qualified diver (and Utility Alliance staff member) Mark Wilcox who actually took to the water and picked out any rubbish that had been swept out to sea – let no one say we’re not thorough!
So, would I recommend hosting a beach clean? Yes! But, it’s perhaps worth taking the following hints and tips into consideration:
- It’s worth collecting after a big event weekend on the coast, or alternatively thinking away from the beach into another local area with litter issues – denes, woodlands, parks, that kind of thing.
- The council has quite a robust litter management programme in place along our coast but further up into Northumberland I believe its less so, but bear in mind we selected Whitley Bay for access to facilities – I’ve done a litter pick in Cresswell before, The Drift Café is pretty good but a bit out of the way.
- The weather can be very changeable, with glorious sunshine in the morning we got a soaking in the afternoon. Staff should come equipped for all weather outcomes along with sensible footwear.
Interested in hosting a clean yourself? Why not hire out the Quorum Beach Clean equipment?
We have the following items in stock which can be loaned out to companies or individuals for only a £30 deposit. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more info.
We have the following equipment in stock:
- 15 litter grabbers
- 20+ pairs of gloves
- Bio degradable litter bags
A big thanks to all our volunteers – we hope you enjoyed the day as much as we did! 🙂