THE Rhu Clean Up Crew held its first community beach clean recently and it proved a huge success.

The volunteer group was set up by local women Rhiannon May and Kate Williams towards the end of 2018 in an effort to tackle the appalling amount of plastic waste constantly washing up on shorelines around Helensburgh and Lomond.

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After a solo mission resulted in bags of litter being removed from the Rhu shoreline in December and January, Rhiannon has been encouraged with the contribution of helpers in recent weeks as support for the cause continues to grow.

She said: "We had a fantastic turnout to our first community beach clean, which took place on the beach opposite Ardencaple Hotel.

"It was a glorious bright and sunny morning, but still a bit nippy!

"Twenty-three people came to clean the beach, our youngest member was four-years-old and as a group we collected 42 bags of marine litter in just two hours.

"There was an enormous amount of plastic pieces from food packaging like crisp and sweet wrappers, thousands of cotton bud sticks, bottle lids, polystyrene, fishing line and rope, pieces of Lego, toothbrushes, can pack rings, even a loo seat and a curtain rail!"

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The hardworking litter pickers were rewarded for their endeavours afterwards with a well-deserved hot drink and free slice of cake at Ardencaple Hotel, where they discussed the experience and the day's findings.

Rhiannon added: "Our beach cleans aren't just about picking up litter, we are about community spirit, raising awareness and making positive changes to our local area.

"We look forward to our next beach clean and to seeing both old and new faces.

"A big thank you to everyone who helped and to Ardencaple Hotel for supporting us."

Rhu Clean Up Crew's beach cleans take place on the last Sunday of every month from 10am-12pm.

The group meets at the Ardencaple Hotel.

For more information email or like Rhu Clean Up Crew on Facebook.