Primary school leads the way in reducing plastic pollution with new litter-pick board

PUBLISHED: 18:00 12 June 2018

Pupils Henry, Orla, Aoife, Thomas, Norah and Ava with Kate Betteridge and Alison Leach from Turn The Tide with their #2minutelitterpick board.

Pupils Henry, Orla, Aoife, Thomas, Norah and Ava with Kate Betteridge and Alison Leach from Turn The Tide with their #2minutelitterpick board.

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A North Somerset school has become the first in the UK to have its own litter-pick board.

Our Cleaner Coastlines campaign launches this week.Our Cleaner Coastlines campaign launches this week.

St Peter’s Primary School, in Portishead, now owns a two-minute litter-pick board, which will encourage children to pick up any rubbish left on school grounds.

The idea for the boards was conceived by #2minutebeachclean in 2014 as a way to make it easier for people to litter-pick on beaches.

The school has been working with Turn The Tide Portishead, a group committed to reducing single-use plastic, to secure a place on the #2minutelitterpick trial.

MORE: Two-minute beach clean board installed in Portishead.

Pupils Henry, Orla, Aoife, Thomas, Norah and Ava with Kate Betteridge and Alison Leach from Turn The Tide with their #2minutelitterpick board.Pupils Henry, Orla, Aoife, Thomas, Norah and Ava with Kate Betteridge and Alison Leach from Turn The Tide with their #2minutelitterpick board.

Headteacher Janine Ashman said: “We are thrilled a chance comment made to Turn The Tide has resulted in us having our own litter-picking board here on school property.

“As a school we are keen to educate our children on the importance of reducing plastic pollution and keeping our environment clean and safe for wildlife.”

The board will be put out during the school day on a rota system, where one class a week will be able to use the board at break times.

Michelle Bailey, who leads on environmentally-friendly initiatives at the school, will record the types of rubbish the children find.

Pupils Henry, Orla, Aoife, Thomas, Norah and Ava with Kate Betteridge and Alison Leach from Turn The Tide with their #2minutelitterpick board.Pupils Henry, Orla, Aoife, Thomas, Norah and Ava with Kate Betteridge and Alison Leach from Turn The Tide with their #2minutelitterpick board.

This will inform a presentation to the school and parents so the litter-picks can result in everyone learning about rubbish and its impact on the environment.

The board is similar to a beach clean station installed by Turn The Tide at the Lido Café.

MORE: Clevedon School cracks down on plastic by ending sales of bottles.

Alison Leach, co-chairman of Turn The Tide, said: “It’s amazing the town of Portishead now has both a beach clean board and a litter-pick board. For St Peter’s to be the first school in not just the area, but the UK is fantastic.

“We have already had positive conversations with headteachers of other local schools and we are currently preparing an education programme to roll out in the autumn which will talk about litter, wider environmental impacts and alternatives to common single-use plastics.”

The Times is working with Turn The Tide Portishead and North Somerset Council to achieve plastic-free coastline status for the district’s towns.

To join in, search for Cleaner Coastlines: Weston and North Somerset plastic-free campaign on Facebook.

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