Annual MCS Beach Clean

Annual MCS Beach Clean

The annual MCS Beach Clean, or Great British Beach Clean to give it the current name, is run by the Marine Conservation Society (MCS).

The Great British Beach Clean takes place from 14 – 17 September 2018. The event around the county’s coastline is part of the MCS Beachwatch programme. It not only spruces up hundreds of beaches around the UK coast, but volunteers also record the litter they find. It’s this aspect that’s really helped MCS change policy and behaviours over the last quarter of a century.

Rossall Beach at Cleveleys Needs You!!

Rossall Beach at Cleveleys is adopted with the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) by Rossall Beach Residents & Community Group. The national, Annual MCS Beach Clean is held here every September.

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Sunday 16 September 2018, from 1.30pm.

Please REGISTER to attend the Annual MCS Beach Clean at Cleveleys

It’s important that you register with the MCS because they use the number of people who take part as statistics in their campaigns.

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

This 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.

The MCS beach clean event takes place every third weekend in September as part of the charity’s year round Beachwatch programme. Volunteers who get involved in Lancashire will be joining an army of beach cleaners not only around the UK, Channel Islands and the Isle of Man, but all over the world as part of the global International Coastal Clean-up, which takes a snapshot of beach litter across the planet on a single weekend.

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

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 –

Just under 7,000 volunteers in total 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.

Plastic pollution in our seas and the crisis the oceans face is no longer under the radar. Industry, individuals and governments know that we have to act now. 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.

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. “The data you collect could result in further legislative change to help our oceans breathe plastic free.”

Less litter = better beaches

Less litter on UK beaches will save the lives of some of our best loved marine wildlife. It will protect our kids building sandcastles and show the world what the great British seaside really looks like, beneath its escalating mountain of rubbish. 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 from the cafe to the Five Bar Gate near Rossall School, against the free seafront parking area.

The litter is almost entirely deposited by the sea, rather than being dropped by beach users. The beach isn’t all covered  by incoming tides, so rubbish is deposited along the strandline. It’s at its worst particularly after winds and high seas.

As with all the other beaches in the UK, working in pairs we’ll record the rubbish collected from a 100m stretch of beach, on the MCS recording sheets.

You’re welcome to do this part of the event (sheets and pencils/clipboards etc provided) or you can clean 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 collected at the annual MCS beach clean at Cleveleys
Rubbish collected at the annual MCS beach clean at Cleveleys

Find out More

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

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