Eco-warriors take to the beach to clean shores of Great Yarmouth

Ben Garrod, Harriett Robins and Jon Garrod at the MCS beach clean in Great Yarmouth. Picture: David

Ben Garrod, Harriett Robins and Jon Garrod at the MCS beach clean in Great Yarmouth. Picture: David Hannant - Credit: Archant

Teams of eager eco-warriors took to the beach of Great Yarmouth this weekend, with the goal of making it a cleaner, safer place to visit.

MCS Great Yarmouth beach clean. Picture: David Hannant

MCS Great Yarmouth beach clean. Picture: David Hannant - Credit: Archant

Equipped with grabbers, bin bags and peeled eyes, more than 20 volunteers set about cleaning stretches of the town's coastline, as the summer approaches peak season.

Kate Whitter and Trevor Saunders at MCS's Great Yarmouth beach clean. Picture: David Hannant

Kate Whitter and Trevor Saunders at MCS's Great Yarmouth beach clean. Picture: David Hannant - Credit: Archant

Two separate beach cleans took place Sunday afternoon, one of which was organised by the Marine Conservation Society, the UK's leading marine charity.

Ben Garrod at MCS Great Yarmouth beach clean. Picture: David Hannant

Ben Garrod at MCS Great Yarmouth beach clean. Picture: David Hannant - Credit: Archant

The charity enlisted the help of volunteers from the borough, as well as television presenter Ben Garrod, as it set about collecting waste from the shores.

Dr Garrod, who is from Great Yarmouth and is an MCS ambassador, said: 'When doing beach cleans, most people expect to find things like cans, but what people don't realise is that most pollution and waste is found beneath the sand. I've been showing people using a sieve how many tiny plastic fragments you find, which are extremely dangerous to wildlife.

'This is why these cleans are so important, and its great to see people giving up their time to do it. I've been lucky enough to go to beaches all over the world and I've never seen one completely without pollution, so these events are vital.'

Trevor Saunders of Great Yarmouth, who regularly organises beach cleans himself, added: 'I get genuinely annoyed when I see beaches not being look after, so that's why I try and do my bit, One item I found this time was a five inch fishing hook, which could really do some damage.'

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Kate Whitton, MCS south east sea champions manager, said: 'We originally aimed this event at people over 50, who maybe do not do as much volunteering as they once did, or find it more different, but we had several younger people want to get involved to, which is brilliant.

'I think it speaks volumes for how much people car about their beach and the town that they would give up their own time, particularly on a lovely day, which it fortunately for us was.'

MCS program support administrator Harriet Robins added: 'I think people really engaged with the event, some of whom have travelled from further away to get involved, so it's really refreshing.'

The clean collected more than 25kg of litter, filling more than five bin bags in the process.

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