A LOCAL branch of a popular coffee chain has taken part in a community litter pick in support of Thurrock Council’s initiative to encourage recycling plastic in the borough.
On Sunday, 1 December, staff from Costa Coffee in Grays High Street joined council staff at the Grays Beachcombers’ last community litter pick of 2019 to collect discarded waste and plastic that had washed up on the shore at Grays Beach. Items collected during the morning session included plastic bottles, pens, cotton bud stems, lighters and wrappers.
The council’s initiative, backed by the Grays Beachcombers, has raised awareness of recycling and the impact that plastics have on the environment and local wildlife through various means including engaging with local school children at Dilkes Academy via an interactive assembly.
Steve Catchpole, lead organiser of the Grays Beachcombers and volunteer waterway clean-up facilitator for the Thames21 project, added: “Organising these litter picks and seeing first-hand the materials that are collected is always an eye-opener. On Sunday, we were joined by 30 volunteers who filled 31 sacks of litter including 97 bottles.”
Keep Britain Tidy ambassador Wayne Dixon and his dog, Koda, who are 4,000 miles into a 7,000-mile litter pick around the UK’s coastline also took part, alongside six people from the social inclusion team of registered charity Open Door, which supports young people, families and vulnerable adults in Thurrock and Essex.
Mr Dixon, who is fundraising for MIND and the Northern Inuit Society as he litter picks around the UK’s coastline, said: “I’m fulfilling a lifelong dream of walking the coast of Britain and am using this as a platform to raise awareness of the world’s litter issue. We’re seeing the world’s litter come up on our shores and we are contributing massively to plastics in the sea. If we all recycled, helped with a litter pick and took some time to think about where our rubbish is going, we can all make a difference.”
Victoria Moorhouse, head of sustainability at Costa Coffee, said: “It’s great to see team members from across our stores taking to the streets and parks to make sure we maintain and preserve the local environment. At Costa Coffee, we encourage our store teams to connect with their local communities in a range of ways, including litter picking activity. This is all part of our nationwide Community Programme, which focuses on supporting team members in making a meaningful difference to the local communities they serve.”
For more information on how to recycle in the borough, go to thurrock.gov.uk/recycling