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Join the Big Spring Beach Clean 2018

The problem of ocean plastic pollution is coming into the ever-sharper focus of public attention, with images of vast floating plastic rafts and injured fish and mammals shocking the nation. Many of us may be wondering what we can do to help. Well you need wonder no more, this April there is the perfect opportunity to get involved with the Big Spring Beach Clean 2018…

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Coastal rambles are one of the joys of walking and we are particularly lucky in the UK, with the coast being within each-reach of most of the population. If we want to enjoy this pleasure for decades to come, then it is clear that the issue of plastic pollution needs to be tackled quickly. The recent explosion of awareness and action around the issue of ocean plastic pollution was powerfully demonstrated by the recent Blue Planet II series. Nicknamed the ’Attenborough Effect’, the series shone an all-encompassing light on the threat that plastic poses to our oceans.

With over a quarter of a billion metric tonnes of plastic pollution floating in our oceans and over 5,000 items of litter on every mile of the UK’s coast, the time to act is now to reduce and wash away our collective plastic footprint from our beaches. This is where we can all play our part.

Taking place between 7th and 15th of April 2018, the Big Spring Beach Clean (BSBC) is organised by Surfers Against Sewage and is the largest and most effective volunteer beach cleaning project in the UK, if not Europe. Since 2010 over 39,000 people have taken part at more than 1,200 events across the UK.beach clean facts

Surfers Against Sewage’ Head of Community and Engagement, Dom Ferris said: “We know that up to 13 million tonnes of plastic enter our oceans every year. We know that millions of animals are dying because of this. We know that plastic is literally suffocating our oceans. Yet, despite this, there is hope and nowhere can that be better felt than on our beaches each spring amongst the tens of thousands of people who have donated their precious time to protect what they love.”

To find your nearest event or to find out how to lead your own clean, simply visit the Surfers Against Sewage website.

If you join one of the events already planned, it is just a case of turning up at the designated time and place to join in with the clean-up – it couldn’t be more simple.

You may also like to check out the map of iFootpath coastal walks.


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The length of our walking guides is given in miles and rounded to the nearest full mile (whole number) for simplicity. For short walks (of less than 2 miles) or walks that have a length that ends in .5, a more accurate walk length may be given in the first section of the walk introduction. For example, the Length in the header may be listed as 6 miles, and the introduction may confirm that the exact length of the walk is 5.5 miles. The walk length is calculated from the GPS file that was created by the walk author GPS tracking the walk whilst walking, using the iFootpath App GPS Tracker, meaning it is very accurate. Our bespoke tracker is particularly detailed and plots a walkers position about every 10 seconds. The tracker is calibrated to match two other reputable map and walking sources, Ordnance Survey and Nike. As with all standardised walk and map lengths, the distance does not take account of hills and slopes, just the distance you would measure using a piece of string on a flat map version of the terrain, so hilly walks will feel longer than stated. If you track the route using another GPS App or Tracker App or Fitness Device, you can expect the distance you record to be different due to different calibrations. This is particularly true of those Apps and devices that count your motion and steps – these can only guess the distance you have travelled with each step and so are much less accurate.

Grade (Boots)

The grade of a walk is an indicator of how difficult the terrain is that you will encounter along the way. This does not take into account the walk length but does suggest how challenging the walk will be. It takes into account things like hills, path surfaces and obstacles (like stiles, gates, steps and rock scrambles). An easy walk, graded as 1 (and shown as 1 Boot) indicates a walk that is essentially flat, has no sharp hills to climb, has no stiles, is easy to navigate (probably along a well-worn path) and is suitable for most levels of fitness. A difficult walk, graded as 5 (and represented by 5 Boots) indicates a walk that is strenuous and involves steep ascents and/or descents. It may be technically challenging involving difficult terrain or obstacles that require scrambling with your hands. Please note that the grading for walks is subjective and open to interpretation and should only be used as a guide when selecting a walk.

NOTE: Do be aware that the level of stamina required for any walk will vary depending on both the walk length and the difficulty grade - you should only walk within your limits.

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