Beach clean-up turns out to be bags of fun

National Citizen Service volunteers with the 25 bags of rubbish they collected in just two hours on the beach.
National Citizen Service volunteers with the 25 bags of rubbish they collected in just two hours on the beach.
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THESE teenagers enjoyed a day at the beach with a difference.

The volunteers had bags of fun, collecting rubbish from the Fylde coastline –despite admitting to being a little hesitant about getting their hands dirty.

The nine volunteers took part in the National Citizen Service programme, on Monday.

Annie Heslop, beachcare officer for The Fylde Beachcare Project, said: “We collected 25 bags in under two hours, which is unbelievable.”

Volunteers often find cans, bottles and barbecues left behind by visitors to the beach.

Much of what is collected is washed ashore by the tide, and Ms Heslop has been employed by the Beachcare Project to educate people about the impact of behaviour on beaches.

She shows that what people pour down the sink or flush down the toilet can affect beaches.

Ms Heslop added: “The group did really well. They seemed quite uncertain at first, but they really got involved.”

The group were beach cleaning as part of a three-week voluntary programme led by the YMCA.

The teenagers have been involved in community and environmental work, learning new skills and making friends.

Ms Heslop said: “It’s nice for them to get out and do some environmental work.”

Beachcare officers say volunteers keeping beaches clean is especially important during the holiday season.

The increase in visitors means more rubbish has to be collected from beauty spots. High tides are bringing in more rubbish.

Annie Heslop added: “We can’t have bins on the beach, due to the way in which you have to collect the rubbish.

“It’s compounded because people come out and enjoy the beach, but we’ve got high tides too.

“It’s a combination of the high tide, and more people being around.”

Ms Heslop works with councils, schools, businesses and community groups to help clean beaches between Fleetwood and Lytham.

To join beach cleans, contact Annie Heslop on 07918 054600.

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