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Clear-ups around the region as volunteers take part in Great British Beach Clean

PUBLISHED: 16:44 15 September 2018 | UPDATED: 09:16 16 September 2018

Volunteers at the Heacham beach clean, as part of the Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society. Picture: Taz Ali

Volunteers at the Heacham beach clean, as part of the Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society. Picture: Taz Ali

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Communities around the region cleared plastic and litter from their beaches as part of a national survey.

Litter picks were held at several locations around the coast, including Southwold, Lowestoft and Heacham.

More then 40 people armed with litter picks and bags cleared rubbish off the coast between Heacham South and North Beach.

Organised by Erna Gotyar, from King’s Lynn, the beach clean formed part of the The Marine Conservation Society’s (MCS) 25th annual Great British Beach Clean.

Erna Gotyar organised the Heacham beach clean, as part of the Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society. Picture: Taz AliErna Gotyar organised the Heacham beach clean, as part of the Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society. Picture: Taz Ali

Spanning 100 metres, volunteers young and old noted each find for the survey, which included wet wipes, straws, sweet wrappers, plastic bags and even a two-metre metal pipe.

“I’m quite passionate about keeping the beach clean,” Miss Gotyar said. “I have attended one of my first beach cleans exactly one year ago and it’s escalated into this big thing.”

Miss Gotyar is also single-handedly launching the Refill project in King’s Lynn in a bid to tackle single use plastic.

Volunteers at the Heacham beach clean, as part of the Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society. Picture: Taz AliVolunteers at the Heacham beach clean, as part of the Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society. Picture: Taz Ali

She is encouraging businesses in the town centre to join the campaign which allows the public to refill their water bottles for free.

After explaining the methodology of the beach clean, Miss Gotyar and the litter pickers scanned the beach for an hour to dig out the rubbish.

Laura Hutchinson helped out in the beach clean with her niece Aimee Frohawk, 4. She said: “It’s a lovely beach and this one way of giving back, keep it clean and keep the wildlife safe. And it teaches the next generation.”

Volunteers found discarded wet wipes and plastic straws at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz AliVolunteers found discarded wet wipes and plastic straws at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz Ali

India Brook-Alexander, 7, said: “I really care about the sea creatures and I don’t like them eating rubbish and dying.”

Another volunteer, Katy Drury, from Cambridge, said: “I’ve been to this beach before and know it’s fairly clean, but there’s rubbish once people have been here for the day. I find plastic bottles and straws and it’s frustrating.”

The information collected from the beach clean will be sent to MCS in order for the charity to “wage war on beach litter.” Previous surveys have helped to drive changes in the way we use plastic, including the plastic bag charge, microplastics banned in personal care products and better wet wipe labelling.

Tthe Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society at Heacham beach. Picture: Taz AliTthe Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society at Heacham beach. Picture: Taz Ali

Other beach cleans for the national survey had also taken place in Hunstanton and Holt.

Volunteers at the Heacham beach clean, as part of the Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society. Picture: Taz AliVolunteers at the Heacham beach clean, as part of the Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society. Picture: Taz Ali

Katy Drury at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz AliKaty Drury at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz Ali

India Brook-Alexander, 7, at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz AliIndia Brook-Alexander, 7, at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz Ali

India Brook-Alexander at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz AliIndia Brook-Alexander at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz Ali

Simon and Jenny Cook with their children found a large metal pipe at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz AliSimon and Jenny Cook with their children found a large metal pipe at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz Ali

Maggie Daniels, Teagan Pendall and Tracie Pendall at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz AliMaggie Daniels, Teagan Pendall and Tracie Pendall at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz Ali

Volunteers at the Heacham beach clean, as part of the Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society. Picture: Taz AliVolunteers at the Heacham beach clean, as part of the Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society. Picture: Taz Ali

Volunteers at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz AliVolunteers at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz Ali

Marth More, 4, and Aimee Frohawk, 6, at the Heacham beach clean, as part of the Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society. Picture: Taz AliMarth More, 4, and Aimee Frohawk, 6, at the Heacham beach clean, as part of the Great British Beach Clean survey by the Marine Conservation Society. Picture: Taz Ali

Volunteers found discarded wet wipes and plastic straws at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz AliVolunteers found discarded wet wipes and plastic straws at the Heacham beach clean. Picture: Taz Ali

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