Sian joins the river clean-up team to battle plastic pollution

Sian Jones of UKDN is pictured beside a boat containing mostly plastic waste that has been removed from the Jubilee River.

 

Business Development Manager Sian Jones has joined conservation volunteers to clear plastic pollution from the banks and waters of a river that flows into the Thames.

Sian, based at the UKDN Waterflow (LG) offices in Slough, pictured above, worked with more than 50 other volunteers along the Jubilee River which runs through the Berkshire town.

She helped clear more than 40 bags or litter from the riverbank and a whole boat-full of waste from the water, most of it plastic, which would have polluted the waters and caused problems for decades to come.

By removing the waste in the Jubilee River, the volunteers were helping protect local wildlife, both in and out of the water, and reducing the risk of the waste reaching our oceans were it would have contributed to a growing problem of marine contamination.

Sian said: “We worked for three hours and collected so much waste it was shocking. What was heartening, though, was to see so many people now willing to make a stand and help clear up the mess.”

UKDN Waterflow (LG), part of Lanes Group plc, is a drainage and clean water maintenance specialist whose teams work 24 hours a day to keep the UK’s drains and sewers flowing freely – so appreciates the problems caused by water pollution.

Sian works for the company’s rail division. Its manager, Eamonn Maloney, said: “We were very glad to give Sian time to be a river clean-up volunteer. We are fully-committed to working with others improve our environment.

“Our drains and sewers are inter-connected with our waterways and are also blighted by plastic pollution and other waste, such as fats, oils, grease, and throw-away wipes. We need to tackle this urgent problem.”

UKDN Waterflow (LG) will now working with colleagues at Lanes Group, which has an operational depot and a major Thames Water utility hub in Slough, to contribute more willing hands to future river clean-up events.

The Jubilee River clean-up was organised by Thames21, a charity which co-ordinates efforts by volunteers to clean up and improve 400 miles of waterways across the Greater London area.

It provided all tools and equipment, along with wellies, waders, safety equipment, and kayaks to reach litter in the river – and volunteers were given refreshments to keep their energy up.

Sian said: “It was very fulfilling to be able to work with others for such a good cause. It would be so much better if plastic pollution and other waste, such as fats, oils, and wipes, were not dumped in our water systems. That’s something we must all commit to.”