Challenge to bring Forvie beach clean to next level

12 November 2019

Forvie National Nature Reserve (NNR) staff is challenging local people to be creative and take the next step in beach cleans by re-using some of the many recovered items.

Every year, tons of rubbish is cleared off NatureScot’s largest NNR beach at Forvie, with most of it going straight into landfill. But some is easily reused or made into something useful.

So far, staff at the NatureScot reserve have re-used beach rubbish for a whole host of purposes: fish boxes have been made into storage or planters, rope transformed into cat scratching poles, netting used for storage or for supports for climbing plants, and plastic containers used as buckets. There are also items available for re-use as found, including footballs, trays – even an inflatable flamingo and a stair bannister.

David Pickett, Forvie NNR Reserve Manager, said: “We’re grateful for the huge amount of help from the public to clean rubbish from the beach at Forvie – this is so important for health of our marine wildlife. But it is only a part of the solution. Every item that is re-used from the beach means one fewer item into landfill and fewer new things purchased.

“We would like to challenge everyone to see what they make with the nets, ropes, floats, and containers. We know there are lots of creative people out there and can’t wait to see all the innovative uses!”

Crawford Paris, who is delivering marine litter initiative, East Grampian Coastal Partnership (EGCP) - Turning the Plastic Tide, added; “We are thrilled to be working in partnership with the staff at Forvie NNR to help tackle marine litter that is sadly making its way onto the reserve. Over the last few months, we have been able to direct efforts to certain areas that were in much need of a clean and the results of the hardworking volunteers have been staggering.

“The challenge we now face is coming up ways to breathe new life into this diverse collection of objects which are now being stored at the reserve centre. However it is also an exciting opportunity to try something different which could potentially be replicated throughout the north-east, and we look forward to seeing how the public can be inspired to repurpose these unique resources.”

All the materials for re-using or re-homing are available in large sacks next to the front door of the Forvie centre for people to help themselves. All NatureScot ask is that people share the ingenious uses they have come up with by emailing pictures to [email protected] or tagging NatureScot into pictures on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.