Culdrose trainees in beach clean-up
Students on the Basic Flying Training at Royal Naval Air Station Culdrose gave up a weekend to be part of the annual Marine Conservation Society’s ‘Beachwatch’ survey.
Taking time off from studying charts and navigation books, students from 750 Naval Air Squadron were busy collecting rubbish and flotsam from a beach close to their Cornish Air Base. It was all part of a nationwide campaign which is studying items found as well as cleaning up the shoreline. Data from the survey contributes to an understanding of marine litter globally and allows measures to be taken to tackle the problems at source. Items recorded ranged from plastic drinks bottles which are found on almost all tourist beaches to plastic fragments from skeet shooting discarded by passing cruise liners.
Working alongside local volunteers were Lieutenants Chris Ford, Llyr Garner, Garth Deppe and Sub- Lieutenant Chris Smith, all glad of a break from studying.
“It’s really good to help out with a great scheme like this that will help the environment,” said Chris Smith of 750 NAS and one of the Beach cleaners. “The weather wasn’t necessary in our favour but it was brilliant fun. The variety of junk and litter we collected was amazing. What people throw away really made us all think of the impact that tourists and passing ships discarding rubbish in UK waters have on the Cornish beaches and across the Westcountry.”
This is the fifteenth consecutive year of recording at Hendra beach near Porthleven with much valuable data being gathered. The Marine Conservation Society (MCS) last year cleaned 335 beaches across the UK by almost 4,500 Beachwatch volunteers. Following a detailed survey, recording what a 100 metre stretch of the beach produced, a sweep of the entire length collecting over 25 Kg of rubbish.