Quite a few months back, we published a blog on sustainable travel, which (we think!) covered some pretty important social, and global, ways to have a positive impact while travelling. All of them are directly linked to sustainable tourism and can be put into practice by all of us, each time we take a trip.
As some of you will already know (and hopefully have been a part of!) one of our sustainability pledges is to do a #2minutebeachclean while on tour. We are thrilled to say that we have had guests join us for this truly wonderful activity, come rain or come shine! More notably the rain… as I’m sure you would agree! Not only did we see our guests embracing the moment, and really getting stuck into the task at hand - but we were thrilled to find ourselves doing more of a 30 minute beach clean each time!
Now, one might say that, comparatively, Cornish beaches are ‘clean’... compared to others around the world anyway. But alas, rubbish is still rubbish.
At the start of our beach cleans, we talk a little about the benefits and positive impacts of what we are doing. During this time, we have seen some guests looking slightly confused as to what exactly they will be cleaning because, on the surface, it looked pretty clean already!
We can, and do completely understand the confusion BUT as we say on the day, dig a little deeper and you will see. You will truly see what rubbish gets left behind and how long it stays for. On days, we have cleaned beaches that, actually, looked fit for a photo-op, but walked away with… now prepare yourselves…cigarette buts, filters, toothbrushes, plastic lollipop sticks, fishing line, black bin liners, plastic bags, shoes, plastic cutlery, plastic ring can holders, polystyrene food containers - and the list, legitimately, goes on.
We would say at this point, that efforts are not only limited to the beach. There are many communities around Cornwall that also participate in village and town cleans that result in nearly the same outcome! We always encourage people to clean as you go - showing that a little self-awareness makes our planet a little more green.
Now, we’re not into the blame game… just solutions. Solutions, ideas, support and participation. That is the order of the day. And let’s not forget, we have fun while we’re doing it! What a laugh while we work, talking of “how it was” … “awareness back then”... “more information available now” and exchanging stories of travel and adventure. How perfect.
So! With all this in mind, we want to share with you a few of our favourite Cornish initiatives that really get our ‘Green blood’ pumping!
Action Nan, AKA Pat Smith, environmental campaigner and founder of Final Straw Cornwall is one of our favourite Cornish environmental activists. Living by the sea means that she can get going on her beach cleans daily and has built a great following and raises awareness through her Facebook page.
National Trust do regular beach cleans and encourage people to pitch in whilst enjoying their time on the beach. They also have lots of information on their website on projects that are focussed on cleaning up oceans and rivers to save wildlife. You can also find out ways to support them through donations, fundraising and volunteering.
Is a community dedicated to the protection of oceans, waves, beaches and wildlife. They fight long and hard to protect what they love and won’t stop until it’s completely clean, safe and protected for everyone, forever. From humble beginnings in Porthtowan Village Hall in 1990, they have stayed close to their roots and continue to be based just up the road at their St Agnes HQ where they can keep an eye on the sea.
Clean Cornwall is a partnership, working together for a cleaner Cornwall that everyone can enjoy. The partnership includes a mix of local authority, volunteer and community groups and local businesses. They come together to discuss environmental issues that the county is facing in regards to litter, and ways in which we can work together to solve them.
Beach Guardian CIC is a Community Interest Company based in Cornwall, United Kingdom. It was co-founded by father and daughter duo: Rob and Marine Biologist Emily. Over the years, regular beach cleaning has been done to collect and remove rubbish from the beaches; mainly plastics washing in from the ocean on the tide. They now organise community beach cleans and conduct educational workshops with schools and other groups to connect people with the environment to improve health and well being of both people and planet.
With all this in mind, we invite you all to take part in a clean beach the next time you are enjoying the sun, sea and sand… even if it’s just a few minutes, it WILL make a world of difference!
To find out more about our sustainability pledge click here
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