Let's give the island a spring clean, say charities

By by Independent reporter newsdesk@iomtoday.co.im facebook.com/iomnewspapers in Environment

Volunteers are getting together to give the Isle of Man a spring clean.

Two island charities are urging people to get involved in the Great British Spring Clean 2017, which is coming up in March with the main effort taking place on March 3, 4 and 5.

This is an annual event run by Keep Britain Tidy.

Zero Waste Mann and Beach Buddies have registered the whole of the Isle of Man as an area where residents will be clearing up their neighbourhoods ready for spring.

Muriel Garland, chair of Zero Waste Mann, said: ’It can be as simple as going outside your own front door and picking up some litter from your garden and around where you live. Whether you live in a flat or a house, a town or a village, every individual can help. Groups and organisations may like to organise something bigger. We hope some local authorities and schools will get involved too.’

Bill Dale, from Beach Buddies, added: ’We know there are thousands of people in the Isle of Man who are quietly making a difference and clearing up their own streets, lanes and local public areas.

’We hope that this year’s Great British Spring Clean sees even more people get involved for the first time. It is the perfect opportunity for families particularly. Litter affects every single one of us.’

Beach Buddies is a pioneer in cleaning up the island.

Despite a bitterly cold biting wind on Sunday, 40 volunteers at Smeale rubbish from the beach and sand dunes before the start of the nesting season.

The team included another influx of volunteers, with one family of five joining in for the first time and another group of four joining their first session.

The visit to Smeale didn’t produce lots of big items, but an examination of the 25 bags collected showed there were several hundred small items, such as bottle tops and loads and loads of cotton buds.

Gill Coulson and Glen Kinrade even found an old Downward’s bottle top, a memory of the long-closed Douglas pop factory.

Pete Jackson discovered an old nest in among the sand dunes, which had been largely made from small pieces of plastic.

Mr Dale said: ’Given that scientists now say that nine out of 10 seabirds have plastic in their stomachs, this shows the value of what we were doing today, and will continue to do so for the next few weeks.’

Contact Zero Waste Mann at greencentre@manx.net or Beach Buddies beachbuddiesisleofman@gmail.com for information about the spring clean.

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