Canoe club takes to water for big clean-up

Members of the Eagle Canoe Club with rubbish collected from the Wensum. Submitted

Members of the Eagle Canoe Club with rubbish collected from the Wensum. Submitted - Credit: Submitted

Rusty old bicycles, dilapidated office furniture and even a near-complete toilet.

These are just a few of the things fished out of the River Wensum by an eco-friendly canoe club over the weekend.

Norwich-base paddlesport club the Eagle Canoe Club put its hobby to good use on Sunday, taking to the water to carry out a mass clean-up operation on the banks of the river, near their clubhouse on Helford Street in Norwich.

Canoes, kayaks and paddleboards were all in use, as members braved the elements to collect waste from the banks, shores and waters of the Wensum.

The clean-up was part of a wider group project, which is raising money to fund a full renovation of its Helford Street site and the surrounding waters.

Stuart Pontin, club chairman, said: 'Our ambition is to facilitate the waters for wider community use, and this was a part of this.

'We have a busy programme throughout the year on this stretch of the river, as well as hosting various community groups such as Scouts and Sea Cadets, so this really shows how determined we are to give something back to the community.'

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The club is building towards a fundraising target of £200,000, and has already successfully bid for funding from the likes of Sport England's Inspired Facilities Grant and the Geoffrey Watling Trust.

Mr Pontin addded: 'We are striving to make the site more attractive to the community groups we share it with. However, we still have another £30,000 to raise to hit the build target, and to ensure the renovation work can actually go ahead.'

The club has launched a fundraising page for those wishing to offer their support which can be found on www.justgiving.com

Are you doing anything to make the region a better place to live in? Email reporter David Hannant at david.hannant@archant.co.uk or newsdesk@archant.co.uk