Thursday, 20 February 2014

Sunny times with the Netley Abbey Beach Cleaning Volunteer Group

After all the storms of recent months, our shores have been left in a mess.  Coasts and cliff faces have fallen and there have been land slips and slides.  There have even been news reports that the government has given up on some areas and decided they may as well be reclaimed by the sea.

Jan from the Netley Abbey Beach Cleaning Volunteer Group
 As well as this chaos, the churn and tumult has disgorged great new quantities of the waste our society creates over our shores and beaches.  Thankfully there are volunteers out there working to try and hold back this tide of litter and Green Hampshire joined up with one such group at the weekend.

The Netley Abbey Beach Clean Volunteer Group are an enthusiastic group of local people who want to help make the best of the shore that the beautiful village of Netley enjoys.  Their area, roughly speaking, runs roughly from Netley Castle to the Royal Victoria Country Park and their organiser, Jan, is always welcoming and enthusiastic.  They have their own equipment with everything that is needed for a session of litter picking.

Adam Manning from Green Hampshire at the clean up. Note actual sunshine!
Despite all the bad weather, their clear up in February was blessed with some revitalising winter sunshine and it was a delightful morning with them working to keep the beach pristine and tackle an environmental problem that’s often all around us.  Litter on our beaches is not only an eyesore. It’s a threat to the wildlife that we are lucky to share our lands with.

Sadly some parts of the centuries' old sea wall that runs along the shore between Weston Sailing Club and Abbey Hall has collapsed over the space of a weekend, a victim of the recent extraordinary meteorology. Part of the original roadway serving Netley Castle it remains to be seen if and when the wall, such a fixture of the area, will be repaired.  Please be careful when exploring the area as a result, especially when in the company of young children.

Part of the sea wall at Netley that has collapsed. Take care!
 It was wonderful to see the University of Southampton’s group for the Marine Conservation Society (USMCS) at the clean up, especially after the atrocious weather conditions at the clean up on Weston Shore the week before.  Amazingly they found an oxygen bottle and diving gear that had seemingly just washed up on the shore adjacent to Netley Castle.

Extraordinary find of diving gear on the shore by USMCS
The Netley Abbey Beach Cleaning Volunteer Group have a Facebook page here: - please be sure to give them a Like especially so you can have an update on when their next clean up is!

USMCS in action at the shore in Netley

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