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Big Beach Clean is a record breaker

Thursday, 21 June 2018

Chief Minister Howard Quayle MHK and Clare Bettison MHK beach cleanThe record books were rewritten on Sunday when almost 400 people took part in the 2018 Year of Our Island Big Beach Clean, in partnership with FIM Capital Beach Buddies.

Political support was provided by the Chief Minister and 14 other members of Tynwald and their families who rolled their sleeves up and took part in the event which saw a total of 11 beaches tackled around the Isle of Man, including the Calf of Man.

The total of 383 comfortably beat the previous record of 229 for a volunteer event set by Barclays staff in April.

Many of the volunteers came from the public service, including a group of prison officers and prisoners who cleaned the beach in Jurby.

The initiative was part of the 2018 Year of Our Island celebrations, which encourages people to ‘explore more and do more’ this year. The month of June focusses on seas and shores and Sunday was a great opportunity for people to ‘do more’ for their community and the environment, and organisers were delighted that about half of the volunteers were taking part for the first time.

Chief Minister Howard Quayle MHK, who took part at Port Soderick, said:

'I’ve really enjoyed getting involved and it’s been great to see so many people helping to look after our special Island in this way.

'It is important for us to not only get out and explore more and to get value from our surroundings, but to also care for them.'

Beach Buddies founder Bill Dale said:

'The statistics speak for themselves, but the real story is how everyone who took part is helping our very special environment and unique wildlife.

'Having clean beaches is the visual result, but the priority has always been to keep the shoreline environment free from rubbish, which harms sea animals and seabirds. The very small pieces of broken-down plastic, especially, are really important to remove as these are often found in the stomachs of dead seabird chicks.'

The public are being reminded to ‘Bin it… don’t flush it.’, a campaign by Manx Utilities not to 'dispose of items – such as wet wipes, dental floss, and cotton buds – down toilets, sinks or drains.

For more information about the 2018 Year of Our Island, visit www.ourisland.im, email ourisland@gov.im or call +44 1624 687007.

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