What a load of rubbish – 4,000 bags collected by Friends group

Friends of The Estuary Coastal Group
Friends of The Estuary Coastal Group
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A coastal care group is busy collecting praise as well as rubbish after recovering more than 4,000 bags of litter from Fylde’s coastline.

Friends of the Estuary first started their cleaning effort in June 2008 and have remained committed to clearing the estuary for more than six years.

Christmas tree that the group made from wood collected over the festive period

Christmas tree that the group made from wood collected over the festive period

After years of tireless work, it was only in a busy festive period that the group reached the landmark figure.

The common aim of members is improving the condition and appearance of the Ribble Estuary at Lytham and Granny’s Bay.

The group only has 31 members with around 20 people on average turning up to each cleaning drive.

Meg Green said: “Our team was out between Christmas and New Year in very frosty and cold conditions when we reached the landmark figure.

“It’s great that people come out in their spare time to help us collect litter.

“Reaching 4,000 bags of litter is in one way something to celebrate – not so much in another way – but it’s fantastic we can be proud of a clean estuary and beaches, it’s an amazing achievement by all.”

Meg says that the sea can wash up all sorts of strange materials with false teeth and road signs from Burnley being washed up recently.

The work carried out helps not only clean up the coastal line but helps protect wildlife and fisherman in Fylde.

Friends of the Estuary were particularly busy over the festive period with wood collected on the beach used to make Christmas trees.

In 2015, the coastal care group has plans to team with Fylde Council in a wider initiative that will look into the full extent of the borough’s litter problems.

Gareth Mathews, Fylde Council’s waste minimisation officer, praised the “brilliant” and “relentless” work of the group and said the council aims to partner with lots of volunteer groups in 2015 in a bid to tackle the problem of litter. He said: “We are going to be making an effort to find out how much litter Fylde produces and help educate people.

“Year on year we are trying go further in waste disposal efforts and by getting the message out to residents, we can make more people aware of the role they can play.”

Mr Mathews says the council will be starting to make quarterly estimations on the amount of litter Fylde creates.

Friends of the Estuary meet at 10.15am every Monday at the Lytham Lifeboat Station car park.