Dozens of hardy volunteers braved the cold to help clear a mountain of rubbish from Seaton Carew’s beach.
A total of 51 people of all ages gave up their time to take part in the national Beachwatch litter pick and survey.
Seaton’s successful event was organised by the Hartlepool Countryside Team on behalf of the Marine Conservation Society.
In just a couple of hours the volunteers cleared the beach of all sorts of junk, including 191 shopping bags, fishing nets, ropes, drinks cans, more than 400 pieces of broken glass and various sanitary items.
Deborah Jefferson, of the countryside team, said: “I would just like to thank everybody for turning out. It was a freezing cold morning and for people to turn up in January shows their commitment to improving the environment. It was fantastic to see so many people.
“Two people had come down from Durham to help out and one lady was from Penrith. She was visiting friends and wanted to help out.”
For people to turn up in January shows their commitment to improving the environmentDeborah Jefferson, Hartlepool Countryside Team
Volunteers included local councillors, residents, St Paul’s Scouts and parks and countryside volunteers who work in all weathers to improve the town’s green spaces.
They were supplied with litter grabs, gloves and heavy duty plastic bags and worked in groups with each one recording the type of rubbish they found on a survey sheet.
Stephen Taylor,who took part, said: “We picked up mainly plastic bags, bottles, bags of dog dirt, which had been left and not disposed of or put in the bin by the owners, and some special mention items such as pallets, sections of Caterpillar tracks and a large plastic road sign frame that we used as a sled to tow heavy items back to the pick-up point.”
Afterwards, Deborah and the team provided hot drinks, biscuits and colouring books for the children who attended.
The team will be holding a similar litter pick and tidying up Stranton Cemetery on February 20.
See the Friends of Hartlepool’s Wild Green Spaces on Facebook for more information or contact Deborah on 07446 060769.