2022 – 9th January – Community Cleanup

We have kicked off the Plastic Warriors’ year, and started our plan of SECOND SUNDAY OF EVERY MONTH, with a fantastic community clean up hosted by the lovely Debi at The Balfour Arms.

Warriors today were Lesley, Simon, Roger, Jan, Penny, Des, Mick, Angie, Kate T, Colin, Phil, Kate R, Niall, Anna, Cherry and her lovely daughter, Maureen, Jodie, Viv, Theresa, Oscar and Luke (hope I haven’t missed anybody) and the team went out off around Woolbrook, heading towards Manstone Youth Centre and the Skate Park.

Several of our wonderful group never made it that far – they got engrossed in the surroundings of the car park at Lidl. It is terrifying now congested the hedges are with rubbish of all sorts. Obviously we need to help our wildlife around here, and hedges like this are an important wildlife corridor. It is also obviously alongside the river and so plastics and microplastics are allowed to simply blow in and drift down through the river, down to the sea.

Oscar and Luke cleared around the launderette and came back twice to deposit their bags of loot. What a ridiculous situation that so much stuff is just thrown in there! The hashtag#Istartedabin sums it up nicely. Hopefully as there is none there now maybe we will have a break from people just using the hedge as a tip…but as I don’t understand the psychology of anyone who would do that, maybe I’m wrong.

Those that made it to the Youth Club and Skate Park were equally rewarded with huge amounts – mainly tins of fizzy non-alcoholic drinks round there so at least that’s something. There are plans afoot for sorting out the hedgerow along the back of that area, so it needs to be really clean so this has been a great day for that.

Everyone came back accounted for, and brought their haul. It is a very different clean from those beach cleans where we all get a little bit, and together it makes 4 or 5 bagfuls and it’s surprising – we knew this was going to be a big haul 10 minutes in. The results are:

Bags of plastic bottles to be recycled – 2

Bags of tin cans to be recycled – 2

Bags of glass bottles to be recycled – 2

General waste bags – 12

Plus 2 metal signs, 1 traffic cone, 2 very long pieces of plastic tubing and lots of poo bags.


Here’s a little video of the stash (I mean the end result, not the actual stash one of the Warriors found 😳)

Thanks to all who did so much today – and to Debi at the Balfour, and Debbie at Streetscene Exmouth who saved me by stepping up when there was a tiny issue with the pickup arrangements for the rubbish!

See you all next month for the first organised beach clean of the year 💚

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