Queen’s birthday inspires volunteers to clean shoreline

From left, Richard and Theresa Willcocks, Graham Smith and Laura Mountford take part in a Stokes Bay beach clean
From left, Richard and Theresa Willcocks, Graham Smith and Laura Mountford take part in a Stokes Bay beach clean
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  • Volunteers are taking part in the Clean for the Queen campaign
  • They will be clearing rubbish from Meon Shore
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CALLS have been made to show the south coast in all its glory by keeping it clean for the Queen in her 90th birthday year.

Graham Smith, from Lee-on-the-Solent, is encouraging green-fingered volunteers to take part in a campaign to tidy up our communities.

I want to encourage more local clean ups and put the Solent area on the map.

Graham Smith

The national project aims for people to make extra efforts to clear rubbish around where they live to mark the Queen’s 90th birthday.

On January 30, Graham and some volunteers will be at Meon Shore in what they hope will be the start of clean-ups for the Portsmouth area.

He said: ‘I had wanted to organise this event anyway, but thought it would be good to do it under the banner of Clean For The Queen.

‘There are lots of different ways for people to get involved and support this effort to clean up our country and celebrate the Queen’s service to the nation.

‘I want to encourage more local clean-ups and put the Solent area on the map.’

So far, the Meon Shore event is the only one taking place in the area.

But Graham wants to build on the success of last year’s Round The Harbour Clean-Up.

Hundreds of people spent the day picking up rubbish from the shorelines in Portsmouth, Havant, Gosport and Fareham.

He added: ‘This is another opportunity for people to make a difference.

‘The impact will be greater in the long term if we get as many young people, schools and youth groups involved as possible.’

Councillor June Cully, of Gosport Borough Council, helps clear the shoreline and waterways in the town with volunteers.

She said the work of these groups and events is essential.

‘It is vital that the volunteers are happy to give their time to do the litter picks,’ she said.

‘Nobody else seems to care about it, but it is an important job that needs doing. It is essential work that the volunteers do.’

She added: ‘I think it is great that volunteers in Gosport have signed up for the Clean For The Queen campaign.

‘Groups in the area already do a lot of events, so to do this as an extra is really great.’

The Meon Shore event starts at 10.30am and volunteers will be picking up rubbish before gathering at The Osborne View Pub, off Hill Head Road at midday. For details, visit meetup.com/solent-environmental-action