Mid Wales

Aberporth launches anti-plastic campaign to cut waste

Photo of Aberporth Image copyright Gail Tudor
Image caption Aberporth is a popular tourist destination in the summer months

A Welsh coastal village is fighting the rising tide of plastic.

Aberporth, a former fishing village in Ceredigion with a population of 1,100, has launched a crusade against single-use plastic products.

The village's general store is selling milk in glass bottles and a pub has replaced plastic drinking straws with paper ones.

A series of fund-raising activities is planned to finance a poster campaign aimed at raising awareness.

Residents launched Plastic-free Aberporth as the UK government's Environment Secretary, Michael Gove, issued his four-point plan for tackling plastic waste.

The Aberporth campaign is being led by local resident Gail Tudor, who took part in a fact-finding tour of the British coastline to see the effect discarded plastics were having on marine life and the shore earlier this year.

Ms Tudor, a film maker, said: "I live by the sea and I want to protect the sea and keep it clean and protect the wildlife.

"There is so much plastic in the sea and on the beaches and when it breaks down into microplastics it can get into our food chain.

"We are not going to get rid of plastic altogether.

"Plastic does have some uses, but what we are looking to do is get rid of single-use plastic such as straws and coffee cups."

Image copyright Gail Tudor
Image caption Gail Tudor says the campaign "is about individuals looking at their lives to see what they can change"

Local pub The Ship has already ditched throwaway plastic products like straws, condiment sachets and milk containers.

Oliver Box, whose family run the pub, said: "One thousand plastic straws cost just £1, while the same number of paper straws is £10. We are putting a jar on the bar where we hope customers will contribute in a small way to what we are trying to do.

"We need the financial support of the local community to support the campaign to banish plastic from the village."

Mr Box said he was "appalled" at the sight of discarded plastic strewn along the Wales Coast Path, which runs through the village.

He said he and his children Finley, 10, and Florence, six, regularly litter-pick on the public path.

"The campaign can only be a good thing if it gets people thinking about their environment," he said.

A cafe in the village, Cwtch Glanmordy, has pledged to use wooden cutlery instead of plastic and has invited customers to bring their own mugs for hot drinks.

The village shop, London House Stores, has introduced milk in glass bottles and is recycling the empties.

Owner Mike Allen said: "This will put our name on the environmental map. I am proud of what we are doing.

"We need to change attitudes of a disposable society generation. Even though this is a small start in our little village, we hope it catches on."

Villager Hilary Rudge said: "I have visited Antarctica on holiday and have seen whales dying from ingesting plastic bags.

"It is a scandal but we hope in a small way here to get the country as a whole thinking."

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