Waterway in Skegness ‘will be cleared of plastic’

Reassurance has been given that plastic waste in a waterway in Skegness will be removed

Concern has been raised about plastic waste in the Waterway in Skegness. ANL-190318-134244001
Concern has been raised about plastic waste in the Waterway in Skegness. ANL-190318-134244001

The issue was raised by a resident who took a photograph of the waste piling up near Natureland.

Kathryn Hoffman was out with her dog on Wednesday when she spotted the waste and said: “The photo was of the waterway which runs behind Natureland.

“Two questions come to mind - what happens to this rubbish and does the water drain into a river or the sea?

“Also ,with a population of 20,000, surely there are enough people living locally who could make the effort to spend a short time each week to reduce the amount of plastic litter on the beach and surrounding areas?”

The complaint comes following an effort by Friskney Primary School to raise awareness of the problem of plastics pollution.

Since the pupils’ article in the Skegness Standard, the local Tesco store has offered to provide litter pickers and support them on a litter pick

The first litter picks of the season run by Coastal Action for All are due to take place on March 30 from the ramp at North Beach and on March 31 from the View Cafe in Winthorpe, both starting at 11am.

Kathryn was also concerned plastic waste may have contributed to seal pup deaths, but Natureland say this is unlikely.

Nicky Yeadon, of Natureland, said: “The litter in the water way is unsightly but fortunately it does not flow out directly into the sea.

“The issue does not directly affect us, except for the odd comment from customers who think it belongs to us.

“It has been empty for repairs and cleaning out and with all this wind a lot of litter from around and about has ended up in there.

“Without postmortems it would be impossible to say what has killed the seals found dead on the beach but it is not unusual for deaths during wild weather.

“Every year at this time we are busy rescuing Grey Seal pups. This is due to the fact that there are now two massive colonies near us - one North at Donna Nook where over 2000 pups were born this winter and similar numbers were born south of us at Blakeney Point. There is always a percentage that do not make it and of course the more born the more are likely to succumb to bad weather and illness.

“We had our busiest seal rescue for 53 years last year rescuing 57 pups and more than half of those were Grey Seal pups and we have now rescued 51 since June last year with six weeks to go, so I am fairly sure after this latest spell of stormy weather that we will be matching that number if not beating it.”

Regarding the plastic in the waterway, a spokesperson for ELDC said: “Unfortunately the recent high winds have blown some debris into the waterway.

“We are currently in the process of preparing and filling the waterway and boating lake in readiness for the start of the season.

“The debris will be cleaned out over the next few days.”