The fourth annual Big Beach Clean Up will clean 135 beaches and canals up and down the country with over 8,000 people - including 3,000 M&S employees - expected to take part. There will be M&S refreshments on the beaches for volunteers.
Last year 250km of coastline and canals were cleared with 4,000 bin bags full of litter collected including 10,950 cotton buds, 21,900 wrappers and 55,600 plastic pieces. Cleaners also found an array of unusual items including false teeth, a hammer, a plastic leg, two motorbikes, a Smurf, a breast implant and an Action Man!
The M&S Big Beach Clean-up is part of M&S’s Forever Fish campaign which is funded by the profits from the 5p carrier bag charge in M&S foodhalls. Since its introduction in 2008, the charge has reduced carrier bag use by 75% and raised over £8 million for good causes.
Samantha Fanshawe, MCS Chief Executive, said: “The Big Beach Clean-up has grown year on year, involving thousands of amazing volunteers ready to don gloves and bags and pick up the rubbish left behind by others, washed down from rivers or discarded from fishing boats and ships. Beach litter levels around the UK are sadly increasing – by over 6% according to our most recent UK survey. This fantastic partnership between M&S, charities and communities raises awareness of the issue and the need for nation-wide action across government, industry and voluntary sectors to stop litter at source.”
To get involved, simply register in advance at www.mcsuk.org/foreverfish.