Volunteers get ready for Big Spring Clean in Mid Ulster

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Organisers of the ninth annual Big Spring Clean are calling on volunteers, schools, businesses and community groups to pick up their litter pickers and spring into action – with a particular focus on plastic in the Mid Ulster Council area.

The Big Spring Clean is a province-wide campaign organised by charity Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful’s Live Here Love Here programme. Last year 119,000 volunteers took part, making it the largest volunteer clean up in the country.

This year, problematic plastics are high up on the agenda. A spokesperson for the Big Spring Clean said: “Plastic in our environment is not just litter, it’s a pollutant, making up two of the top three most frequently encountered litter items.

“80% of this litter ends up in our oceans which is incredibly costly and difficult, if not

impossible to remove, devasting coast lines and harming marine life which in turn means plastic is entering our food chain, damaging our health.”

Jodie McAneaney, Live Here Love Here Manager, said: “The time is now for preventative steps to reduce, reuse and recycle the plastics we use. The Big Spring Clean is a great opportunity to raise awareness of the issues and record our findings so that we can take steps to improve.”

Volunteers can either organise their own clean-up or get involved in exiusting events which have been organised in the Mid Ulster area from Portglenone to Swatragh and lots of places in between. Visit www.liveherelovehere.org/bigspringclean or contact enquiries@liveherelovehere.org