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On patrol for plastic

Joining #PlasticPatrol on SUP and Canoe

Posted by Gav Grayston.
First Published Jul 2018; updated Jun 2023.

Plastic is causing a lot of problems on our waterways and elsewhere. We join #PlasticPatrol on SUP and canoe and help clean-up Ellesmere Port.

We've all heard by now just how much damage plastic is doing, and will continue to do for millions of years.

Plastic Patrol

After becoming the first female to paddle across the English Channel on a Stand-up Paddleboard, or SUP for short, Lizzie 'Outside' Carr decided to do something about it.

So she created #PlasticPatrol.


Supported by the Canal and River Trust, Lizzie is running a number of free SUP sessions around the country so that you can get a taster of using the waterways on a SUP and also help clean-up the plastic problem.

Joining #PlasticPatrol at Ellesmere Port

We joined up with #PlasticPatrol at Ellesmere Port at the National Waterways Museum.

Unfortunately, under 18s couldn't use the SUPs at this event, but that wasn't a problem as we took our Sevylor Waterton Inflatable Canoe.

On the canal at Ellesmere Port with the #PlasticPatrol

The paddleboards were also inflatable. These were from a company called Fanatic, and we were really impressed by these boards. I notice they also do inflatable SUPs for kids.

They were a lot quicker to set-up and put away than our canoe for instance.

On the SUP and ready to go

It wasn't long before we started to find rubbish.

Tom is a keen litter picker and was soon collecting lots, filling up our canoe.

Our canoe was filling up!

Plastic in the reeds

We found a lot of plastic cought up in the reeds.

Dirty plastic bottle

I wouldn't want to drink that!

In the sunshine

We had great weather! A nice day for a paddle.

Paddling on the water with Lizzie

On the water with Lizzie Outdoors

Finding rubbish in the canel

Not the prettiest part of the canel. Still found rubbish though.

Collecting rubbish using a stand-up paddleboard

Hunting for plastic on the Stand-Up Paddleboard

Rubbish on the paddleboard

The paddleboards were a great stable platform for getting at the rubbish

People on SUPs collecting plastic rubbish

The plastic patrollers collected a lot of plastic

Some of the plastic waste collected

Inspecting his treasure

After a couple of hours, we had collected a lot of plastic. It was time to get rid of this rubbish in the proper way.

Two 1-tonne bags were full of rubbish by the team the #PlasticPatrol team had finished.

The rubbish we collected

The plastic Tom collected

Getting rid of it

Time to get rid of the plastic properly


Get Your Family Involved

Whether you do it as part of an organised event, or get yourself a litter picker and do it yourself, this is an activity you can get the kids involved with.

Click here to see more of Lizzie's #PLASTICPATROL Clean-up Events.