CAPS clean up the River Braid
County Antrim Paddle Sport (CAPS) are asking the public “Canoe Help” keep litter at bay locally?
Their appeal was issued after they carried out a very successful litter pick along a stretch of the Braid River in Broughshane.
With some members of the club on the river in their canoes, whilst others searched along the river bank, they managed to lift six
refuse bags of general litter, three tyres, a plastic oil drum and piping, a bucket, and even a part of a low rider bike. Their packed bags were then collected by the Mid and East Antrim Council the next day for disposal.
The evening was organised by club member Marion O’Dornan who ensured all safety guidelines were adhered to. The event also gave the group a chance to meet and
catch up after the various Lockdowns which prevented many of their usual paddle trips.
Members started at The Mill in Broughshane and either paddled or walked along the banks of the River Braid with litter pickers in hand tidying the stretch along the Buttermilk Bridge Walk and finishing in the Playground Area car park.
“We were surprised at the amount of litter along this small section of the river,” Marion said.
CAPS pointed out that, with the increasing numbers of people out in popular areas such as this, the Waterway Ireland, Leave No Trace Guidelines for Getting Outdoors Responsibly and Safely amid COVID 19, reminds the public to dispose of their waste properly and consist of the following: To be considerate, maintaining social distancing, Keep group sizes small and remember the seven principles of Leave No Trace
Plan ahead and prepare
Be considerate to others
Respect Farm Animals and Wildlife
Travel and camp on durable ground
Leave what you find
Dispose of waste properly
Minimise the effects of fire
The younger members of the group also enjoyed the evening and are intending to use these litter pick events as part of their nationally recognised John Muir Award, which is an environmental award scheme focused on wild places and, once restrictions are lifted, they can continue on their Canoe Association Northern Ireland (CANI) Paddle Awards.
CAPS extended thanks to its members for taking part and to the Mid and East Antrim Borough Council for the loan of the litter pickers and for providing the refuge bags.
Anyone interested in getting into the sport can find out more information and get contact details of their nearest club by visiting the website at www.cani.org.uk