Plastic waste in our oceans and washing up on our beaches in the Uk and indeed around the world is big news at the moment. It’s estimated that 12 million tons of plastic is dumped into the world’s oceans every year. 76% of the 8,300 million tonnes of plastic produced between the 1920’s and 2015 became waste with only 9% of that being recycled at the time. Countless Wildlife including fish, seabirds, turtles, dolphins, whales, and other marine life are killed each year by mistaking plastics for food or by getting entangled in discarded fishing gear. This tide of plastic pollution washes up with the tide on our beaches every day and is an eyesore to those who use the beach for leisure activities such as walking, swimming, surfing, kayaking etc.
So, at bespoke we wanted to take positive action and do our bit to help with this increasing problem. This year we organised our own beach clean in conjunction with Surfers Against Sewage, the environmental charity. As a keen surfer and paddleboarder, our HSEQ Director Brian Ramsay has been a member of Surfers Against Sewage since its inception in 1990 and provided the link between the two organizations. Our group was named the bespoke CUBS, (bespoke Clean Up Britain).
Despite the cold weather, on Friday the 12th January a team if nine bespoke Head Office staff and Operational Managers led by our Managing Director, Jackie Woodall, gathered at Sand Bay near Weston-Super-Mare at 9am and after a quick safety briefing, armed with the SAS bags for life and litter pickers we set off to collect as much rubbish and waste as we could.
The amount of waste on the beach was astounding, everything from discarded walking poles to coke cans, McDonalds packaging, glass and plastic bottles, old training shoes, were collected. We walked a two mile stretch of beach over the three hours and when we had finished, we weighed what had been collected and found we had picked up a whopping 43kg of waste. Jackie donated a bottle of champagne for the person who collected the greatest weight in rubbish. This was won by bespoke Contract Manager, Josh Abrahams who managed to gather over 10kg of waste, great effort Josh!!!
All in all, the day was an enormous success with the bespoke CUBS doing their part to fight ocean pollution and cleaning up our local natural environment, whilst getting out on the fresh air and taking part in some teambuilding. Numerous members of the public out taking in the sea views and walking their dogs came over and handed us rubbish and thanked us for what we were doing which made it all worthwhile.
Beach cleaning is hungry work, so the bespoke CUBS were treated to Fish & Chips as a reward for their hard work. More cleans are planned for the future, with the next one taking place in the West Midlands where we plan to clean canal paths.
Watch this space, the CUBS will be out again! https://www.sas.org.uk/