This week is the Big Outdoor Bloggers Cleanup. Running from Friday 20th through to Friday 27th of January, Outdoor Bloggers across the country will all be getting out in their local environment and spending an hour clearing up in support of the Meek Family's Clear Plastic UK Campaign - which aims to remove 100,000 plastic bottles, lids, cups, and straws from our wild spaces, matching the number of sea mammals killed each year from being trapped in plastic or eating it.
The task itself is simple. Get yourself outside (the more the merrier) for an hours walk, collecting all the rubbish you see while out, then count the pieces of plastic you have collected and share (with a photo of yourself of course!) on Instagram or Twitter using the campaign hashtag #Refuse4Good and tagging @ClearPlastic_UK. The plastic you have removed from the environment will then be added to the Meek Family's total which currently stands at a whopping 17,142 pieces.
So yesterday, we wrapped up warm and headed off to Neigh Bridge Country Park in the beautiful Cotswold Water Park, for our cleanup. The Cotswold Water Park is the largest inland man-made water feature in Europe, covering an area of 40 square miles, and containing more than 150 lakes set across the countryside of Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and West Oxfordshire. The lakes have been created over the last 50 years by extraction of glacial Jurassic limestone gravel, which millions of years ago, eroded from the Cotswold Hills. These quarries, once the gravel has been extracted, are left to naturally fill with water, and are then managed by the Cotswold Water Park Trust for the benefit of local people, visitors and wildlife. We decided that Neigh Bridge Country Park was a perfect spot for our cleanup due to the Infant Thames running alongside the lake, meaning that any plastic rubbish left there, has a very real chance of ending up making it's way down to London, and out into the sea!
We were lucky enough to have been sent some Supertreats Bars to try, which are a carob alternative to chocolate treat for kids that doesn't contain any refined sugar, caffeine or other nasties. It turns out they are super delicious, and were a perfect way to refuel after all our hard work - you can find find our Supertreats review here.
We were all shocked at how much rubbish we were able to collect in such a short time, as well as the plastic rubbish which is the focus of Clear Plastic UK Campaign, we also collected two bin liners of other rubbish including numerous glass bottles and cans.