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Shotgun cartridges and plastic straws found during beach clean up

PUBLISHED: 12:54 18 September 2018 | UPDATED: 12:54 18 September 2018

A team of Environment Agency staff did their bit to help clear litter on a Suffolk beach as part of the nationwide Great British Beach Clean  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

A team of Environment Agency staff did their bit to help clear litter on a Suffolk beach as part of the nationwide Great British Beach Clean Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Archant

Plastic straws have become a modern day plague, blighting our beaches and endangering sea life - but Environment Agency staff waged a war on these and other rubbish during a clean up along Dunwich and Minsmere beach.

Six members of the customer and engagement, and communications teams did their bit to help clear litter on Monday morning as part of the nationwide Great British Beach Clean.

Among the fascinating finds were shotgun cartridges and a metal keyhole, as well as the usual plastic straws and bottle tops.

They then noted their findings for a Marine Conservation Society survey, which helps identify waste issues that need tackling.

Phil Lee, communications team leader, said: “We all really enjoyed the beach clean and the weather was fantastic. It is always a shame to see litter on the beach but we’re glad that in just a couple of hours we collected several bags of waste which would have otherwise remained there causing damage to the environment.”

A team of Environment Agency staff did their bit to help clear litter on a Suffolk beach as part of the nationwide Great British Beach Clean  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNA team of Environment Agency staff did their bit to help clear litter on a Suffolk beach as part of the nationwide Great British Beach Clean Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

On Saturday 18 members of the public joined a beach clean at Dunwich as part of a series of similar events across the country.

The Great British Beach Clean ran from September 14 to 17 and is the biggest beach clean and survey in the UK.

The information the volunteers have collected over the last 25 years has helped make some of the most significant impacts on beach litter ever - the plastic bag charge, microplastics banned in personal care products, and better wet wipe labelling.

Alison Joseph, visitor experience manager for the National Trust at Dunwich Heath, said: “We do beach cleans regularly here-whether it is volunteers or our National Trust staff. We are seeing less plastic bags which is great as I think people are realising the harm they do to the environment.

Some of the rubbish that was found on the beach   Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNSome of the rubbish that was found on the beach Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

“There has been a generic reduction in waste but it is important to keep on top of these things.”

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