Rotary Reveals Riverside Top 10 Rubbish Finds from Plastic Blitz

The results are in – there is way too much rubbish being left behind by people to pollute our Thames. Be it something quirky like a positive pregnancy test, vandalic objects such as traffic cones, or just plain litter like cigarette butts and bottle caps, our river and its banks are being abused.

During its “Plastic Blitz” river clean-up last Sunday (18 September) the Henley Rotary analysed some of the rubbish it collected. In short, it went through three bags garnered from a sweep of the area roughly between the car park for Marsh Lock and the Henley bandstand.

Here is a conservative estimate of the Top 10 rubbish finds:

1)    Cigarette stubs (non-biodegradable and containing plastic) – 247

2)    Pieces of polystyrene or plastic packaging – 205

3)    Paper/card – 64

4)    Plastic sweet wrappers – 43

5)    Metal bottle caps – 42

6)    Metal/paper foil – 22

7)    Drink cans – 18

8)    Lolly sticks (mainly plastic, some wood) – 16

9)    Ring pulls from drink cans – 15

10)  Takeaway containers – 8

Jeremy Gaut from Henley Rotary said, “Remember, this is just the most common and from only a small part of the river. There were also things like hair bands (8), plastic cutlery (6), a car tyre, wet wipes (7), and plastic pens and lids (5), among much else.  All this is now gone. But it will surely be back and heading for the river and seas unless we change our and our neighbours’ habits. “

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