Worthing citizen scientists join Great British Beach Clean

Volunteers on Worthing seafront for the Great British Beach Clean, part of A Wonderful Week in Worthing. Photo by Derek Martin DM1992956a
Volunteers on Worthing seafront for the Great British Beach Clean, part of A Wonderful Week in Worthing. Photo by Derek Martin DM1992956a

Worthing took part in the Marine Conservation Society’s Great British Beach Clean as part of the new festival, A Wonderful Week In Worthing, celebrating all the town has to offer.

The Big Beach Clean on Saturday was organised by Dr Barbara Shaw, alongside a heritage fair in Beach House Park.

The day included a guided strandline safari with Sussex Wildlife Trust, where living seas officer Sarah Ward led two walks along the beach to show people some of the natural marine life that can be found washed up on the shoreline.

Volunteers helped clear litter from the beach and collected valuable data for the Marine Conservation Society, which uses it to influence policy changes at a national level.

Rebecca Pow, environment minister, said: “Litter blights out beaches and threatens our ocean life. Thanks in part to the efforts of countless volunteers across the UK each year, we can help to keep them clean and protect the wildlife that lives there. But we can’t just deal with the damage caused by litter and plastic pollution – we need to tackle this issue at source and we are taking action.”

The citizen scientists in Worthing recorded all the litter they found to help build a picture of the most prolific litter types and tackle them at source.

Barbara said there were a lot of crisp packets but it was pleasing to note there was much less angling waste than last year.

Worthing mayor Hazel Thorpe and her consort Robin Rogers joined the group towards the end of the beach clean and helped with weighing the rubbish and sorting the equipment.

A display at Worthing Library ahead of the event showed the reasons for the beach clean, plus details of the groups who work together to make the shoreline and countryside a better, cleaner, more eco-friendly place.

There will be a second exhibition from Saturday, showing what litter was collected this time.

The ‘wonderful week’ festival was sponsored by Simon Margaroli at the Ardington Hotel and organised by Wendy Greene in conjunction with Worthing mayor Hazel Thorpe and town centre manager Sharon Clarke.

Wendy said: “Our aim is to bring together a number of local groups and individuals, all promoting each other. Simon’s original idea was to have a long weekend but I expanded it to ten days.”

The art and craft exhibition on September 14 raised £115 for the mayor’s charities and David Henty, who gave a talk at the Ardington Hotel, donated his fee, too.