Annual MCS Beach Clean

Annual MCS Beach Clean

Rossall Beach at Cleveleys is adopted with the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) and hosts this national Annual MCS Beach Clean every September.

Rossall Beach Needs You!!

Rossall Beach Residents & Community Group need your help with a Great British Beach Clean at Cleveleys –

Sunday 16 September 2018, from 1.30pm.

Please REGISTER to attend the Annual MCS Beach Clean at Cleveleys

It’s important that you add your name to the MCS list of volunteers because they use the number of people who take part as statistics in their campaigns.

Please wear suitable footwear, and dress according to the weather (sunscreen/warm clothes/waterproofs etc). All equipment will be provided.

The community group cleans the shingle beach between the end of the new promenade and Rossall School every four weeks. Once a year they host a Sunday clean-up as part of the national Marine Conservation Society (MCS) Great British Beach Clean event.

Volunteers at the Annual MCS Beach Clean
Volunteers at the Annual MCS Beach Clean

Brilliant Beach Cleaning Result!

In 2017 a whopping 111 volunteers helped Rossall Beach Residents & Community Group to clean up 87 sacks of rubbish from Rossall Beach at the Annual MCS Beach Clean.

Have a look at an album of photos from 2017 on their Facebook page

During last year’s Great British Beach Clean, just under 7,000 volunteers cleaned 339 beaches around the UK and picked up over 255,000 pieces of litter. That’s a 10% rise in the amount of rubbish on UK beaches compared to 2016.

Now, 25 years after the first mass beach cleaning event, the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) says the UK stands on the cusp of helping make its silver anniversary event the biggest ever.

Plastic pollution in our seas and the crisis the oceans face are no longer under the radar – industry, individuals and governments know that we have to act now to take the momentum started by MCS in 1994 when the charity began collecting beach litter data to fresh heights. The momentum has been taken to another level over the last 12 months by Blue Planet II, Sky Ocean Rescue and MCS’s own #STOPtheplastictide campaign.

“Cleaning 339 individual beaches last year was a fabulous achievement by our volunteers,” says Lizzie Prior, MCS Beach and River Clean Officer. “But we know that it’s only the tip of the iceberg. There are hundreds of beaches around our coasts that have never been cleaned and surveyed – and it’s the collection of this data that is so important to getting even more positive changes implemented than have already been achieved in the last year or so.”

Knowledge is power

MCS volunteers have cleaned thousands of UK beaches over the last 24 years. From the Hebrides to Cornwall, Gwynedd to Kent, the charity has recorded just about every bit of rubbish its volunteers have picked up, and used that information to create a sea of change for our oceans. Reducing carrier bag numbers, a movement to stop plastic straws being handed out in their thousands, clearer labelling on wet wipes and proposed deposit return systems – all have been made to happen thanks to volunteer beach cleaners.

The single-use plastic carrier bag charge across all the home nations has resulted in a 28% drop in the number of bags found on UK beaches. Microbeads in personal care products have been banned in the UK and manufacturers and retailers have made wet wipe labelling clearer, and cut out their plastic content. High Street bars, and restaurants and smaller independents have banned plastic straws in their hundreds.There’s a growing momentum to see a tax on plastic ‘on the go’ items, like lids, stirrers and cutlery.

“The more beaches we have litter data for, the clearer the picture we will have of where it all comes from and what needs to be targeted next,” says Lizzie Prior. “We would love to see well over 500 beaches cleaned this year. If you live near a beach or have a favourite that you regularly visit, why not show it some love and organise a beach clean and survey. It’s really simple and the data you collect could result in further legislative change to help our oceans breathe plastic free.”

The 2018 Great British Beach Clean is the second one to be sponsored by Waitrose. In the last year the supermarket has introduced more easily recyclable sandwich packets, banned the sale of plastic straws in store from September and stopped giving them out in their cafés and are removing all single-use takeaway coffee cups by the autumn, saving up to 52 million cups annually potentially reaching our seas.

Less litter = better beaches

Less litter on UK beaches will save the lives of some of our best loved marine wildlife, protect our kids building sand castles and show the world what the great British seaside really looks like beneath its escalating mountain of rubbish. So come along and join in with the Annual MCS Beach Clean this year! You’ll have fun and meet a great group of people.

Join In

More about the Rossall Beach Group

Join the Rossall Beach Group on Facebook

Why the Rossall Beach Group litter pick

Rossall Beach Residents & Community Group hold beach cleans on the shingle beach at Cleveleys every four weeks. They look after the beach between the cafe at the end of the new sea defences, and the Five Bar Gate near Rossall School at the end of the free seafront parking area. The litter which is removed is almost entirely what is deposited by the sea, rather than being dropped by beach users. The beach isn’t covered entirely by incoming tides, so the rubbish is deposited along the strandline – particularly after winds and high seas.

As with all the other beaches in the UK which are taking part in this event, working in pairs we will record the rubbish which is collected from a 100m stretch of beach, on the standard MCS recording sheets. You are welcome to do this part of the event (and we’ll provide the sheets and pencils/clipboards) or you can just clean the other parts of the beach by collecting litter. The whole amount of litter will be weighed at the end of the event.

The reasons why it’s so important to do this exercise are several fold. The rubbish contributes to the quality of the sea water, especially sewage related debris. We may only collect the plastic remains, but they give an indicator of how much actual sewage is being discharged to rivers and the sea. The rubbish itself has a hugely detrimental effect on the wildlife of the oceans, with animals being caught up by litter and suffocating, drowning or starving.

The litter which is found on every beach takes literally forever to degrade, if then at all, for example:

  • Aluminium cans – 400 years
  • Plastic can holder – 400 years
  • Plastic bottle – 400 years
  • Crisp packet – 75 years
  • Fishing net (trawler) – 600 years
  • Plastic bag – 30 years
  • Cotton bud stick – 450 years
  • Newspaper – 1 year
  • Glass bottle – 1 million plus years.

Please dispose of your rubbish carefully.

rubbish on Cleveleys beach in the Annual MCS Beach Clean
All kinds of things get washed to shore
Rubbish collected at Cleveleys during the Annual MCS Beach Clean
Rubbish collected from what looked like a clean beach!

Find out More

Have a look at the Visit Cleveleys website homepage for more of the latest updates.

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