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Coast to coast paddleboarder raises awareness about plastic pollution

The first attempt to solo paddleboard the breadth of England from Liverpool to Goole has begun this February to raise awareness about plastic waste in our canals, rivers and oceans.

Paddleboarding on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal

Jason Elliott will be navigating his way from coast to coast along the Desmond Canoe Family Trail, the longest of it's kind in the UK spanning 160 miles. With the continued generous support of the Desmond Family, the trail creates fantastic opoportunities for youth engagement and local communities.

Jason, a lifelong surfer, canoeist and paddleboarder is making the first coast to coast attempt to encourage people to think about alternatives to single use plastic.

"The issue of plastic in our waterways is serious, and one that cannot be taken lightly. People think about the plastic in the World's oceans, but it's affecting us here in the UK too in our inland canals and rivers as well as our beaches.

The biggest difference we can make is by moving away from single use plastic packaging and disposing of our waste responsibly – something each and every one of us can do.”

Paddleboarding on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal, 2019

Every year it costs the Trust over £1 million to clear plastic and litter dumped in our waterways, funds that could be spent on improving wildlife habitats and ensuring the waterways are a lovely place to spend time.

Danny Matley, programme manager at Canal & River Trust, commented: “Through our Desmond Family Canoe Trail project and regular community volunteering sessions we work really hard to look after our canals and rivers to ensure they remain great places for people and wildlife.

“We're really glad that Jason is undertaking this challenge to help raise awareness of the problem of plastic pollution, and we hope his efforts will remind people to always bin or recycle their rubbish and encourage them to get involved in helping to care for their local canal.”

Kingfisher in flight with small fish in its beak

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Last Edited: 20 June 2024

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