Plastic Free Shanklin

this in from Sarah James of Plastic Free Shanklin

Plastic Free Shanklin was founded in 2018 to promote awareness of the plastic problem and waste in general and achieve the Plastic Free Community status by Surfers Against Sewage, which outlines 5 objectives.

It is often commented that Shanklin is very clean, especially its beaches. And yes we are very proud of our town, village and seaside. Shanklin welcomes lots of visitors every year and you may notice some changes in the place you stay or go to eat and drink – paper straws or no straws, cardboard takeaway packaging, paper takeaway beer cups, reusable water bottles in your hotel room, free water refills, covered ashtrays, jars of preserves instead of single use plastic ones, glass bottles of water in pubs. Once you start looking, you’ll see it a lot.

The tourism industry has a huge impact on the environment. We’re used to seeing the towel signs in bathrooms asking us to consider whether we need a fresh clean towel when we were learning to save water. Now we’re talking about plastic.

As an industry we can help and save money at the same time, not only in our businesses, but as a county as well.

Here’s what you can do;

Condiment sachets – Use bottles. They’re cheaper and don’t blow away

Provide Water Refills (you can join a Refill App) or water in reusable bottles. Sell glass instead of plastic.

Advise guests of the 3 Ps – Pee, Poo, Paper

Bathroom signs for towel reuse

No single use toiletries. This will save you money and many good brands are now doing this. You’ll find some of the best accommodation providers on the Island are now doing this. Experiment and keep all the bottles used in a month.

No STRAWS except paper. Biodegradable materials are not yet currently biodegradable anywhere in the country.

If you provide takeaways please provide wooden cutlery and cardboard containers.

Covered ash trays. Cigarettes contain lethal chemicals and are easily blown into drains and the sea.

Offer incentives for people not using takeaway hot drinks. Even if you use recyclable cups and lids they will just get thrown in the bin down the street. Not recycled.

NO BALLOONS they are a menace to wild life

Think about the kitchen, the restaurant, the breakfast room, the beach. What are you using that didn’t use to be plastic or throw away? What’s the alternative?

Please talk to your guests and customers about what you are doing. A survey found that 80% of travellers wanted to have a more environmentally friendly holiday, but most were unable to do so. So advertise what you’re doing. It could gain you business.

But we appreciate that everyone has to be on board so here’s what we are asking of our visitors;

Bin The Butt – The beach is not an ashtray! Please put all of your cigarette butts in the bins, not on top, on the beach or on the street. 4.5 trillion cigarette butts make their way into the environment every year, leaching nasty chemicals into wildlife and the sea

Take Your Litter Away – Don’t leave your rubbish. Crisp packets, sweet wrappers (especially the torn corners. Try opening them like a crisp packet instead of tearing the corner), plastic bottle lids and caps & plastic sandwich bags (use paper) are a menace on our beaches. Please be careful.

Plastic Bottles – Bring a reusable bottle, most accommodation providers, cafes and bars are happy to offer free refills. 460 billion new plastic bottles are made every year, all from new plastic.

Takeaway drinks – Sit and drink your coffee out of a cup – you’re on holiday & it tastes better. Or bring your own cup. Coffee cups and lids are not recyclable. And if they are they don’t get recycled.

Plastic Bags – Bring your own reusable bags. The average plastic bag is used for 12 minutes before it is thrown away. They are not recyclable.

Single Use Plastic cutlery – Bring your own cutlery or go somewhere where they provide wooden cutlery.

Straws – just say no to all straws except paper. ‘Biodegradable’ straws do not bio degrade in the sea and there are currently no facilities in the UK to biodegrade such materials.

Takeaway Packaging – Many good takeaways now provide paper containers. Make sure you put all of the rubbish in the bin. Bringing us onto…

Condiment Sachets – Say no if you can help it. They blow all over the place, no matter how hard you try to keep hold of them!

Balloons – if you are celebrating carnival or going to a certain fast food restaurant please try to say no or find an alternative. And keep hold of them. It’s illegal to release balloons from IOW council land (ie the beach).

Dog poo – Bag It and Bin It. Red bin or black rubbish bin. Not recycling bins.

Single Use Toiletries – yes, we know it’s included, but think about how many of those little plastic bottles are used every day in Shanklin and around the world. Bring your own favourite one, or one you got as a present. Let’s face it girls like their own conditioner anyway.

Remember the 3 Ps only flush Pee, Poo and Paper. No razors, no wet wipes, no cotton buds, no nappies (yep people do try). Just the 3.

And finally don’t forget to try out the train and buses on the Island #drivelessseemore or better still leave the car at home.

Our council do a really good job at recycling 55% of our waste. One of the best in the country. We believe that if every town in the country, whether it’s by the sea, a river or no water at all and everyone around the world does their bit we can reverse the damage we have done.

If you or your guests would like to join one of our beach or town cleans when you are here check our Facebook page for events.