The local community group Paddle Peak have been out again recently continuing in their quest to remove all of last year’s flood debris left strewn down the banks of the River Derwent from Darley Dale downstream.
Hundreds of hay bales were washed into the river, leaving thousands of metres of black plastic and other items stuck in the trees.
The team have been out on several occasions recently working in socially distanced pairs and have finally managed to clean every inch of the river banks that’s within reach from The Arc Leisure Centre where the waste was swept in, down to Cromford Bridge. Other pairs from Midland Canoe Club have also been cleaning the river banks above Darley Abbey in Derby.
Pete Astles, Paddle Peak’s Founder, said: “It’s such a massive achievement to clean all of the flood debris right down to Cromford. No one would take responsibility for this pollution in the river. It’s taken our group of passionate environmentalists to get in there and get it cleared out.
"We are cleaning the river, saving wildlife and stopping this plastic sheeting breaking down into micro plastics and heading out to sea. Great work team.”
The Paddle Peak groups' future plans are to carry on with the clean up work downstream from Cromford and remove all of the reachable flood debris right the way to Derby.
"A huge thanks to our faithful volunteers and local activity providers Escape UK, Acclimbatize and Rapid Horizons for their tireless effort," Pete added.
"Thanks also goes to Derbyshire Dales District Council for the pink bin bags and collecting all of the rubbish. Hou Canoes. for our amazing new waste collection boats named the Derwent Warrior 1 & 2. And the Riverside Kiosk in Matlock Bath for the well earned freshly made chips, plastic packaging free of course. Thanks also too Matlock Bath Parish Council, Masson and Cromford Mills for their continued support."
Paddle Peak is a community project promoting responsible paddlesports in the Derwent Valley.