Spring Clean for River Derwent

10th April 2014

Sunday 6th April marked the fourth West Cumbria Rivers Trust annual litter pick between Portinscale and Bassenthwaite Lake.

Soaked to the skin but still smiling, 17 keen volunteers braved the elements to keep our river clean. With representation from the local community and organisations, including the Woodlands Trust, West Cumbria Canoe Club and Keswick Anglers, we were a force to be reckoned with!
40 bags of rubbish were collected following the very wet and windy winter, with an interesting assortment that included a fridge, various items of road safety equipment, bits and pieces of clothing (nothing for a Saturday night on the town), bottles, cans, large plastics, polystyrene and…a message in a bottle!
Thanks to the West Cumbria Canoe Club, the two open canoes made a huge difference by safely reaching those tricky items that were too much of a stretch from the riverbank; helping reduce the acrobatics from our enthusiastic and determined pickers on the bank! The boats were also instrumental in transporting the heavy items downstream to the pickup point.
To complete the team effort, farmer Mr Kevin Tyson (Dancing Gate Farm) kindly provided transport to carry all the rubbish up to the lay-by ready for collection by Allerdale Borough Council – phew!
All in all you couldn’t ask for more; a great day out with fantastic folk, fun and the feel good factor of keeping our rivers clean and pristine for wildlife and for everyone to enjoy.

Ian Creighton, West Cumbria Rivers Trust Manager sums it up “Litter on river banks is a danger to wildlife and detracts from the beauty and tranquillity of our river. The spring clean makes a real and immediate difference to this section of the River Derwent and it’s an opportunity for a healthy day out with other like-minded people.”