Coronavirus: Lake District clean-up group launched to tackle 'awful' littering

Rubbish at the side of a lakeImage source, Lakes Plastic Collective
Image caption,
Cans, bottles and food wrappers were collected by the group at Ambleside

Campaigners in the Lake District have launched a clean-up group to tackle piles of litter being left by visitors.

The Lakes Plastic Collective was set up on Instagram by Nicola Bolton and friend Josh Adams after they noticed a rise in rubbish following the easing of coronavirus lockdown guidelines.

Discarded barbecues are among the items members have so far collected at a number of sites.

People are being urged to pick up any litter they spot while in the area.

"It's always been an issue, but it's increased quite a lot recently so we decided to start a bit of a campaign on social media in order to get the place cleaned up," Nicola, of Windermere, told BBC Radio Cumbria.

"It's awful, really. We've found a lot, particularly at car parks in Grasmere and Rydal, and also at the areas alongside the lakes.

"We've hit several of the lakes around the national park and taken a fair amount of litter home."

Image source, Lakes Plastic Collective
Image caption,
Several bags of litter were taken from the shores of Ullswater

As well as their walking gear and packed lunches, the collective is urging people to "pop a pair of gloves and a plastic bag" in their backpacks and pick up any litter they see while they are out and about.

The group's social media account highlights rubbish encountered at different spots.

Last week, a separate group of campaigners said beauty spots across Cumbria had been left like a "mini-Glastonbury" by crowds of people lighting fires and leaving piles of litter.

It was also revealed National Trust wardens and National Park Rangers filled 130 bags with rubbish, including "toilet waste", after tourists began returning to the Lake District.

Meanwhile, the owners of the Haweswater reservoir said campers felling trees and damaging dry-stone walls had left them "appalled, shocked and saddened".

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