Businesses urged to help clear the Tyne

BUSINESSES in the borough are being asked to help keep the River Tyne clean and safe for vessels to navigate on as part of a north east environmental project.

The Clean Tyne Project is a partnership between the Port of Tyne and the river’s bordering council authorities of North Tyneside, Gateshead, South Tyneside, and Newcastle, that aims to clean up the river and raise public awareness of environmental issues.

Now in its sixth year, the project regularly surveys the entire length of the river from Tynemouth to Newburn and Ryton to identify where rubbish accumulates.

Once the survey data is analysed, the project can determine where to concentrate its clean up efforts.

This is done in two ways, firstly by employing the debris collection vessel Clearwater to move large objects such as tree trunks and even cars, and secondly by getting volunteers from local businesses to take part in clean-up sessions called ‘River Bank Raids’.

Clean Tyne Project manager Jayne Calvert from Gateshead Council, said: “River Bank Raids are an excellent way of putting something back into the community at the same time as doing a worthwhile, environmentally friendly task.

“The teamwork we see from firms is amazing and everyone really enjoys the challenge as well as the satisfaction of seeing a small part of the river totally transformed.”

There are currently eight raid slots available between May and October, two in each council area.

Businesses are requested to donate a minimum of £350 towards the cost of organising the event, which includes refreshments, health and safety facilities, marketing and a framed certificate.

The debris collection vessel Clearwater has recently lifted a number of large tree trunks from the river which were causing an obstruction to small boats using the navigation channels.

Once wood and debris is pulled out everything is recycled, reinforcing the projects green credentials.

For more information contact Jayne Calvert on (0191) 433 3524.