Sunday, September 11, 2016

Cleaning the Wandle September 2016

South Wimbledon. Sunday 11-September-2016.

A second month of half day volunteering, this time I left at lunchtime because there were so many volunteers - 74 in fact! That must be a record. I was somewhat surplus to requirements.

First up the safety briefing from Polly. A bit like the aircraft safety demonstration, I've heard it enough times I could probably recite it verbatim, "please check as the nearest exit may be behind you."

In the morning I let the newbies go on ahead in the water and have the fun and excitement of finding stuff to haul out. I've been there, done that and it is good to let others have the thrill and possibly want to come back again.

One of the contributions to the large number of volunteers was a team effort from ZipVan office in Wimbledon. Well done guys for lending a hand.

Lunchtime we hit a hitch in the form of a wasps' nest that put a stop to our downstream progress. Theo Pike was an early casualty of the waspish impediment, here applying Wasp-Eze.

When Mary and I downsized we no longer had a garden nor a need for a wheelbarrow so I donated ours to the trust, nice to see it in action.

Unlike last month, the water level was lower and the flow more modest which made for a pleasant wade in the water.

The usual rubbish haul at lunchtime as I bailed out and left the rest to it.

And there's more: part of the clean-up was captured by filmmaker Jeremiah Quinn and featuring a voiceover by Theo Pike, chairman of the board of trustees. This short (3:44) film provide an great overview of the River Wandle and why I like it so.

A lovely day.

The Wandle Trust is an environmental charity dedicated to restoring and maintaining the health of the River Wandle and its catchment. They hold community river cleanups on the second Sunday of every month, up and down this unique urban chalkstream – pulling out everything from shopping trolleys to shotguns, and improving the environment for birds, fish, insects and local people. For more visit:

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