All hands on deck! London to host events to help stop litter entering the briny deep

All hands on deck! London to host events to help stop litter entering the briny deep

Avast ye! The Treasure Your River campaign is recruiting local pirates to join them in the battle against litter in our river systems…

Join fellow comrades in celebration of Talk Like A Pirate Day on Sunday 19 September, as local organisations supporting the campaign are set to host a number of events and activities in London, to raise awareness of marine litter and offer pirates in the city the opportunity to get involved in litter clearing interventions.
With a number of activities taking place, there’s something for sea dogs, old salts, scallywags, rapscallions, jack tars and even landlubbers.
Thames21 is running a free event for people to learn how to take amazing photos on the foreshore of the Thames, with photographer Jeanette Lendon. The foreshore is a unique vantage point to capture, celebrate and raise awareness of London’s trash and treasure and join in with the fantastic #TreasureYourRiver campaign.

Photos will exhibited online where the public will be able to vote for those they think best convey the themes: people, pirates, place and plastic.

Everyone is welcome including photography beginners and those who are yet to explore the wonder of London’s foreshores. Register for free tickets via Eventbrite

The event is being held at Queen Caroline Draw Dock, Hammersmith Bridge North Side on Sunday 19th September, at 11am.

In 2019, polling* by the environmental charity Hubbub, who are running the campaign with the support of The Coca-Cola Foundation, found that 74% of Londoners want to do more to reduce litter in the ocean.
Launched in May, the Treasure Your River campaign aims to remove 95 tonnes of litter and prevent a further 90 tonnes from entering seven of the UK’s vital river systems that are home to a wide array of wildlife. Sink Me! That’s the equivalent in weight of 740 grey seals or 1,423 harbour seals, both commonly seen in the Thames estuary, or 42 baby minke whales – similar to ‘Minnie’ rescued from the Thames earlier this year.

Since its launch, the campaign has seen more than 463 volunteers clear over 648 bags of litter.

Gavin Ellis, Director and Co-founder of Hubbub said “Treasure Your River aims to help people make the connection between litter in our towns and cities and plastic in the oceans. We hope to create a legacy for each river taking part in the campaign, by building an army of regular volunteers, litter-clearing equipment and improved ‘binfrastructure’ in towns and cities across the six chosen rivers. Talk Like A Pirate Day is a great example of the positive things people can do to get involved! With the majority of plastics in the oceans being carried there by rivers, we invite any individual or organisations along these rivers to come together and help halt the flow of litter into the sea. Afterall, there’s no Davy Jones’ locker collecting it at the bottom of the briny deep!”

Jon Woods, General Manager of Coca-Cola Great Britain, said “We are supporting the UK’s largest collaborative effort to prevent and reduce the amount of litter entering our rivers and oceans. Talk Like A Pirate Day is a fantastic initiative and provides simple, practical ways to make a difference to waterways in the local area. We encourage everyone to get involved in removing and recycling as much marine litter as possible.”
Rosa Clavane, Thames River Watch Community Engagement Officer at Thames21 said “Talk Like a Pirate Day is an amazing opportunity to access the treasures of the tidal river, which is a slice of the sea in the heart of London. We will be showing how to take photos of the sights and finds from the riverbed that do justice to this great resource, to show to the rest of London.”

Treasure Your River will tackle litter in the rivers Avon, Forth, Mersey, Severn, Taff, Thames and Trent and their tributaries. The campaign is being run by environmental charity Hubbub and supported by The Coca-Cola Foundation, and will initially focus on prevention and clean-up activities on seven major cities based on these rivers – Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Liverpool, London, Manchester and Nottingham, which between them are home to 1 in 6 of the UK population.
The ambition to unite over 80 organisations in the clean-up is gaining strong support from businesses, charities, community groups and river users. Partner organisations already on board include Angling Trust, Canal & River Trust, Keep Scotland Beautiful, Keep Wales Tidy, Mersey Rivers Trust, Sustainable Hive and Thames21. The Rivers Trust are also partnering to independently measure the impact of the campaign, using technology including geotagging of litter reduction activities to create a map of the results of the nation’s collective efforts. This will be shared with partners including the Marine Conservation Society to build a wider map of UK litter.

To find out more and sign up to the campaign visit


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