Rubbish left on Weston beach by tourists cleared up by volunteers
- Credit: Archant
More than 40 bags of rubbish were cleared from Weston beach by volunteers after tourists flocked to the seafront.
Molly Williams and Anya Lawrence spent almost three hours on Friday evening cleaning up the mess left behind by holidaymakers.
Molly told the Mercury: “I have been home from university since lockdown and have been going on lots of walks and I noticed that since the lockdown has eased and people are allowed to visit, the litter on the beach has increased massively.
“The tide comes in very fast in Weston and so all the rubbish that is left that day gets washed into the sea.
“I decided to start picking up the litter to look after our environment and do my part. I have received such a positive reaction for just doing one litter pick that I am going to try and do as many as I can and help to educate and get people involved.
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“Although we shouldn’t have to do this and people should take their rubbish home or put it in the bins, there’s not a lot else we can do. The council needs to have signs about litter, maybe the ‘leave only footprints’ quote as you come into Weston and having pickers and bags that people can use if they want to help out for a while.
“Obviously with the virus at the moment it is hard to get lots of people involved, but I hope when it eases I can arrange more litter picks for the beach.”
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Central ward councillor Mike Bell said measures including improved recycling provisions have been introduced to deter people from littering.
He said: “I was appalled to walk around the seafront in Weston and see the huge amount of rubbish that had been left behind by visitors. I love to see Weston busy and people enjoying our community, but it is ruined for everyone if people don’t take responsibility for their own actions.
“I’ve asked North Somerset Council and 15 extra large wheelie bins are being added to the seafront and beach entrances in the next couple of days to try and provide more facilities for visitors to safely dispose of their litter.
“New signs will also go up soon reminding visitors about the importance of social distancing and to ‘leave only footprints’ on their trip to Weston.
“This is some quick action to try and address the situation we saw last weekend and before. We’ll keep working on more enforcement, better positive behaviour messages and with our great team of volunteers to strengthen things still further.
“Council teams and our amazing local volunteers do a great job clearing up, but we need to do more to stop this happening in the first place.”
A Visit Weston spokesman added: “If you do choose to travel to visit Weston’s beaches and open spaces, please leave our environment just as you found it.
“If bins are full, please take your rubbish home and dispose of it safely.
“We can say with some certainty that residents don’t create this.”