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Challenging weekend cleaning Barmston Drain

Members of the award-winning Kingston Kayak Club spent the weekend cleaning out boat loads of rubbish from their local waterway in partnership with Groundworks, Environment Agency and other local volunteers. 

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Kingston Kayak Club (KKC) has been a catalyst to helping thousands of people from Hull and the East Riding of Yorkshire enjoy every element of paddlesport.  The club has been voted the best canoe club in the UK twice, partly because of its community support and environmental responsibility.  

Over the weekend of 18/19 September, the club supported Groundworks, Environment Agency and local volunteers to clean up a large section of Barmston Drain and its surroundings.

The waterway through the main residential areas was seriously littered with all types of rubbish making it an eyesore, harming wildlife, and reducing the enjoyment of a natural corridor through the city. Because it’s an important draining system any debris in it restricts the flow of water and creates the possibility for serious local flooding.

The partnership concentrated on the Hall Road to Greenwood Avenue section on Saturday and Clough Road to Stepney Lane on Sunday. The area near to Inglemire Lane has yet to be tackled but it’s hoped that the partners might arrange another collection later in the year.

Members of KKC used Open Canadians to gain access to the water from which they removed, bottles, cans, bags, cones, bicycles, balls and shopping trolleys - this was a serious undertaking as the conditions were difficult.

With support from EA and the volunteers in total 250 bin liners of rubbish (badly contaminated so therefore unrecyclable) were removed. Amazingly, 58 shopping trolleys from a single supermarket were recovered and returned along with two from other supermarkets.  

Dave Rawding, Chair of KKC said:

“This was tough and unpleasant work so I am very proud of what our members achieved.

"The steep banks made access and rubbish removal hard, the thick weed made paddling difficult and an unpleasant odour was emitted every time the bottom of the drain was disturbed.

“This was the most challenging cleans ups we have done. Removal of so much rubbish transformed the drain and the way the drain looked. I just hope that those selfish people that drop litter respect the efforts that have been made.” 

Karen Tozer of Groundworks, said: “The impact the partnership has made to the drain is huge.

“Looking at the areas we cleared afterwards I was really pleased with how hard we had worked to we improve a crucial drainage system. This must encourage wildlife and people’s enjoyment of the area.”

More information can be found on Kingston Kayak Club’s Facebook page.

For details on how you can arrange your own paddle pick up, please visit the Clear Access, Clear Waters website: