Thames21 embraces Great British Spring Clean with 11 events on rivers across London

Date of release: Friday February 24

Londoners across the capital will don wellies and waders to spring-clean London’s rivers with Thames21 as part of the Great British Spring Clean weekend on March 3rd to 5th 2017.

London’s leading waterways charity will stage 11 Great British Spring Clean events from Hillingdon in the far west of London to Tilbury in the east.

To help launch the event in London, a big clean up is happening on the Thames salt marshes at Purfleet, on the iconic RSPB’s Rainham nature reserve (pictured), in Thurrock on March 3rd.

Emma Howard Boyd, Chair of the Environment Agency, and Betsy Bassis, the Chief Operating Officer of the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), are due to take part in this clean up.

Emma Harrington, Development Manager at Thames21, who will lead the event at Purfleet, said: “The Great British Spring Clean tends to focus on parks and streets across the UK. But rivers need our love and TLC too! They are wonderful wildlife spaces but tend to be overlooked, and can end up littered as a result.  Our project officers run clean ups throughout the year, to give people as much chance as possible to get down to their local river, either the Thames or one of its many tributaries.

“In the past year we have run nearly 500 events on the Thames and its tributaries and involved 7,000 people cleaning up litter, cutting back overgrown vegetation, planting or enhancing the riverbed.

“Many of those people who got involved in last year’s Clean for the Queen event, have loved it so much they’ve come back to help us again since then.”

Michael Hamilton, Chairman of Thames21, said: “We’re delighted to get behind a fantastic national scheme such as Great British Spring Clean, because it really inspires people to take ownership of their local environment, of which rivers are a vital part.”

The GB Spring Clean campaign – a follow up to Clean for the Queen last year – aims to inspire more than half a million people across the UK to get outdoors and clear away the rubbish that lies around us.

It is calling on individuals, businesses and community groups to take greater ownership of their local area to take action in their communities against litter.

For anyone inspired to lead their own events in future, Thames21 is also starting one of its Leading a Waterway Clean Up courses on Saturday March 4. This is the first day of a two-day course and more details can be found on our website.

Four of Thames21’s Great British Spring Clean events will be in Thurrock, with the charity running others in Harrow, Thamesmead, on the River Pinn and Fray’s River and Edgware.

The full list is below:

Sunday February 26 Stanmore Marsh Clean Up, Harrow 11:00am – 12:30pm Meeting point: by Bus Stop H on Whitchurch Lane, HA7 (North Marsh) Harrow, HA7 1AH

Tuesday February 28 Friends of River Pinn Clean Up, Philpot’s Farm Meadow 10:00am – 1:00pm Meeting point: Philpot’s Farm Meadow, 107 Heather Lane Yiewsley, UB7 8AP

Wednesday March 1 Friends of Fray’s River Clean Up at Little Britain Lake, Cowley 10:00am – 1:00pm Meeting point: Fray’s River, Little Britain Lake, Old Mill Lane, Cowley, UB8 2LG

Friday March 3 Thames clean at the RSPB nature reserve, Purfleet, 10am to 1pm Meeting point: RSPB Purfleet Environment & Education Centre, New Tank Hill Road Purfleet, Essex RM19 1ZX

Saturday March 4 Clean Up at Neasden Recreation Ground, Welsh Harp Reservoir 10:00am – 1:00pm
Meeting point: Neasden Recreation Grounds, Aboyne Road, NW10 OEY

Saturday March 4 The Great British Spring Clean up in Thamesmead: 10:00am – 1:00pm
Meeting Point: 2 Twin Tumps Way Thamesmead, SE28 8RD

Saturday March 4  Thurrock’s Thames-side Tidy-ups: Tilbury 10:00am – 1:00pm
Meeting point: Worlds End pub, Fort Road, Tilbury, RM18 7NR

Sunday March 5 Clean Up at Silk Stream Park 10:00 am – 1:00 pm Meeting point: Silk Stream Park, Montrose Avenue, Edgware, HAB

Sunday March 5 Thurrock’s Thames-side Tidy-ups: Grays part one 10:00am – 1:00pm Meeting point: Grays Beach, Argent Street Grays, RM17 6JF

Sunday March 5 Pitshanger Park Spring Clean 11:00am – 1:30pm
Meeting point: Bandstand in Pitshanger Park. Entrance via Woodbury Park Road or Meadvale Road London, W5 1NS

Sunday March 5 Thurrock’s Thames-side Tidy-ups: Grays part two. 2:00pm – 4:30pm Meeting point: Wharf Hotel, Wharf Road South Grays, RM17 6SZ

Notes for editors

About Thames21

Thames21 is an environmental charity putting healthy rivers back at the heart of community life. Through environmental improvements, education, research and advocacy efforts, Thames21 is inspiring and influencing effective and lasting change by working hand-in-hand with communities to deliver tangible and measurable improvements for urban rivers.

The Great British Spring Clean is an annual  national campaign led by the charity Keep Britain Tidy and embracing a wide range of partners including business, schools, local authorities, charities and communities to get active in clearing up litter from their local neighbourhoods | Registered Charity No. 1103997

Media Contact

Ian Lamont

Communications Manager at Thames21

07739 627 667 020 7248 7171