Berwick beach clean shows plastic problem

A clean-up of Berwick's Pier Field beach was carried out on Friday by Coast Care and a team from Port Brae Wealth Management.

Wednesday, 27th June 2018, 3:41 pm
Port Brae Wealth Management staff carried out a beach clean at Berwick's Pier Beach.

Motivated by the well-publicised plastics debate, the Port Brae team were keen to give something back to their local community in an area where they could really make a difference.

The team of 10, including directors Mark McGonigle and Michael McGovern, completed more than two hours of cleaning on the beach, picking up a huge amount of beach litter including hundreds of different types of plastic, most of which are small enough for a bird to ingest.

Despite the small size of the litter, the team cleaned up an incredible 100kg.

As well as completing the valuable beach clean, the team learnt more about the impact of plastics on wildlife including the rare birdlife which form part of the ecosystem in the Northumberland Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

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Mark said: “As a team, Port Brae are delighted to be helping Coast Care with their fantastic project to look after our incredible area. The team have learnt a lot during the day and thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to make a difference.”

Michael added: “It was really interesting to learn about the impact of inland towns on marine litter and plastics. We’ve got offices in Berwick, Hawick and Peebles. Once you learn it’s obvious, but you need to take the time to think that litter in our inland towns regularly ends up in rivers and subsequently finds its way to the sea.”

Coast Care project co-ordinator Gary Campbell was delighted by the success of the event.

“Port Brae have been an absolute pleasure to deal with in every aspect of arranging and completing their beach clean,” he said. “It’s hard to convey how great an impact forward-looking companies can make by allowing and encouraging their teams to take part in Coast Care activities so a huge thanks goes to Mark, Michael and their team.”

Coast Care is a partnership between the Northumberland Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Seahouses Development Trust and Northumberland Wildlife Trust, supported through the Heritage Lottery Fund.