Ouseburn celebrates 'plastic-free' status

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"Plastic-free" OuseburnImage source, Newcastle City Council
Image caption,
Volunteers, campaign groups and businesses held a series of events to raise awareness

A community in Newcastle is celebrating after becoming the first in the area to gain "plastic-free" status.

Ouseburn residents and businesses took action following concerns about litter in the River Tyne.

They held events including plastic-free street food festivals and education sessions in schools.

Local businesses also swapped disposable items such as straws and coffee cups for more environmentally-friendly alternatives.

The award, from marine conservation charity Surfers Against Sewage, recognises efforts to reduce the impact of unnecessary single-use plastics on their local environment.

Musician Chad Male, who started the Plastic Free Ouseburn campaign, said: "Everyone has embraced it with open arms and relished in the opportunity to do something positive for their local area and the environment.

"A grassroots campaign like this goes to show how each and every one of us really can make a difference."

Rachel Yates, from Surfers Against Sewage, said: "Every step the community and the individuals in it take is a step towards tackling the problem at source, challenging our throwaway culture and encouraging the habit and system changes we need to see."

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