ENVIRONMENTALISTS will unite on Hayling Island on Friday for the nation’s largest volunteer beach clean – and you are invited to join them.
Local businesses, residents and campaigners will gather near The Ferryboat Inn at 11.30am for the Big Spring Beach Clean, organised by marine conservation charity Surfers Against Sewage.
The aim of the effort – co-run by Final Straw Solent – is to raise awareness of and safely crack down on plastic pollution along Hayling’s coastline.
It is one of about 550 clean-ups being staged across the country this week as part of a nationwide Surfers Against Sewage-backed campaign.
Among those set to take part is Karen Murphy, who runs transport company Vinnie’s Vintage Vehicles and photography studio Confetti Coast Photography.
She said: ‘As a business local business owner, I’m committed to cleaning up our own businesses and have made efforts to change our use of plastics, who we purchase supplies from, and how we dispose of supplies safely and responsibly.
‘I’ve been monitoring the pollution there [Hayling] for some months and have been shocked at the scale.
‘It’s dangerous stuff – broken plastic, toxic materials, a huge quantity of cotton bud stems, straws, plastic bags and dog waste bags.’
Another target for the group will be the beach’s ‘alarming quantity of nurdles’ – lentil-sized, raw plastic beads used to produce plastic items from.
Details of all items collected will be recorded and used to raise awareness of plastic pollution.
Anyone is welcome to attend the two-hour Big Spring Beach Clean and organisers say car sharing is advisable to get there.
Alternatively, the Hayling Ferry operates services from Eastney to Hayling at 10am and 11am.
A second clean will also take place in Southsea, on April 21.