Over a five-year period, Litter Free Dorset are working with local communities along the Dorset coast, to implement projects and behaviour change campaigns to reduce coastal litter and improve bathing water quality at Dorset’s 38 designated bathing water beaches.
Keep scrolling for information on our completed projects and keep your eyes peeled for updates on incoming 2022 projects at Lyme Regis, Weymouth, Ringstead, Studland and Sandbanks.
Click one of the buttons below to find out about the projects we have completed in that area (or keep scrolling!)
In 2022, the ‘Don’t Feed the Locals’ campaign was implemented in Lyme Regis. This included business engagement with posters and stickers displayed by takeaway outlets, targeted social media as well as a dedicated event activity called seagull stories at the Lyme Regis Fossil Festival. ‘Don’t Feed the Locals’ has now been implemented across the Dorset coast.
Lyme has many active community groups which act on behalf of Litter Free for example: Turn Lyme Green and Litter Pick Lyme.
A Ballot Bin has just been installed in Lyme Regis! A Ballot Bin is a specially designed cigarette butt bin with a question and two answers – so you can have your say while binning your butt!
Ballot Bins have been shown to reduce cigarette litter by over 40% so we’re excited to see how this works in Lyme over the next few months.
If you’re heading to Lyme for a wander, make sure you take a walk on the prom and check out our shiny new Ballot Bin on the wall next to the Cobb Arms, you can’t miss it!
In 2021, Litter Free Dorset worked with Highland End Holiday Park and and landowners to maintain excellent water quality at Eype Beach.
A banner was installed at the entrance to the beach, water quality signage was improved by Dorset Council and the Environment Agency, as well as the ‘What not to flush’ campaign which was also implemented by the campsite.
In 2018, Litter Free Coast and Sea worked in partnership with Dorset Food & Drink and The Arts Development Company to carry out engagement work in West Bay to reduce the amount of take away litter left behind on the town’s beaches. This was achieved by encouraging :
A plastic surgery was formed and following local businesses taking action, Litter Free Coast and Sea worked with a local artist to create a ‘take away packaging’ sculpture in West Bay. This celebrated the work of everyone involved in the project, while inspiring others to adopt similar behaviour changes, strengthening connections to the coast.
In 2018, Litter Free Coast and Sea worked with the National Trust and local community members to set up a ‘doggy’ beach care group called Jurassic Bark West Dorset (formerly Pooo Pin).
Since then, Litter Free Dorset have continued to support Jurassic Bark’s activities – the group regularly meets up for dog walks in the Hive / Burton Bradstock area to beach clean and pick up discarded dog poo.
Working in partnership with Weymouth Town Council and Weymouth & Portland Marine Litter Project, a new Toy Library has been created for Weymouth seafront. The project will involve collecting beach toys in our specially made crate, which will then be available for other visitors to borrow, reuse and return. Any broken toys will be removed and recycled into plastic furniture and other items. Another step towards encouraging people to buy less, reuse more, and reduce plastic pollution.
We have also worked alongside the Town Council and community groups to help facilitate the installation of crab line recycling bins and drain artwork to reduce cigarette littering at Weymouth Harbour.
We have worked with local business close to the seafront to encourage there customers to take their rubbish home and not feed the seagulls. ‘Table Talkers’ have been used as well as signs outside some establishments.
Drain artwork & leafletting
We worked with local artist, Coleman Sign and Design, to design and produce artwork around four drains in the Castle Cove / Sandsfoot area.
The artwork featured the messages ‘only rain down the drain’ and ‘the beach starts here’ to remind residents and visitors alike that the only thing that should be entering our roadside drains is rain as pollutants and other nasties can be easily washed out to sea down our surface water drains.
To accompany the drain artwork, we designed and printed a double-sided ‘only rain down the drain’ leaflet, reminding residents that they’re only a drain away from Castle Cove. These leaflets were delivered to residential homes in the Sandsfoot area.
Sandsfoot Beach Mural
With input from Castle Cove Sailing Club, we worked with local Weymouth-based Dead Walk Designs to create a mural, encouraging the public to have a fun but responsible time at the beach, and leave only footprints!
In the autumn of 2021, Litter Free Dorset worked with local community members to set up a new beach care group at Bowleaze Cove who organise regular beach cleaning activities at the cove.
In 2022, Litter Free Dorset worked in partnership with the National Trust – to promote their Refill facilities at Studland Bay. We worked with local artist Ben Spurling to create a bespoke design for Studland, with banners at beach entrance points and signs directing visitors to the two on-site refill taps.
We also hosted a pop-up event at Studland Knoll Beach, featuring our ‘Tappy Hour Cocktail Bar’. It was a busy Saturday with lots of visitors! We spent the day making delicious tap water ‘mocktails’ and giving away reusable water bottles to encourage beachgoers to #BringaBottle and #Refill.
Litter Free Dorset worked with the Lulworth Estate to co-design new signage and flags installed across the Lulworth Estate to set the tone for responsible behaviour while highlighting the location of key amenities, such as toilets and bins.
We also set up a working group comprising local volunteers, a local Councillor and the Lulworth Estate to discuss litter picking activities/hotspot areas to focus clean-up efforts on. Through this working group, the Lulworth Litter Scouts were formed.
During the summer of 2021, Litter Free Dorset also organised with Planet Purbeck for ‘Wanda the Waste Warrior Fish’ to go on tour around the Isle of Purbeck and organised for Wanda to be displayed at Lulworth Cove during the August Bank Holiday.
‘Love Our Beach’ Sustainable Swanage Project
From May 2018 – March 2020 Litter Free Dorset ran a campaign aiming to reduce the amount of Fats Oils and Grease (FOG) from going down the drains in Swanage through behavioural change with residents and businesses.
The Swanage ‘Love our Beach’ project aimed to reduce sewage pollution incidents by reducing blockages in the drainage system caused by FOGs. The campaign focussed on FOG management in kitchens, as well as highlighting items that are often incorrectly flushed down the toilet – such as wet wipes and nappies. Locals were encouraged to find other ways to ‘love their beach’ and look after bathing water quality by reducing litter, waste and remembering that its ‘only rain down the drain’.
‘Blitz the Butt’ Sustainable Swanage Project
Sustainable Swanage worked in partnership with Litter-free Purbeck to host a public event in Swanage on 18th May 2019 to raise awareness of cigarette butts in the area and to clean them all up. 16 volunteers collected nearly 5kg of soggy cigarette butts from the streets of Swanage!
We have worked to increase awareness of the operation of a surface water outfall on the beach while celebrating different beach users and activities in the Boscombe & Springbourne communities.
During the 2022 Easter holiday, we held a pop-up ‘Love Your Beach’ event on Boscombe beach with Wessex Water, Dorset Devils and the Bournemouth University Student Union’s Champions to celebrate different beach users, promoting responsible beach-going, raising awareness about micro-plastics and water quality.
We have created flyers which have been distributed to Sorted Surf Shop and the local RNLI lifeguards. These flyers include information about the Boscombe surface water outlet.
Litter Free Coast and Sea engaged with local community members to help establish two beach care groups along the Christchurch stretch of coast – the Highcliffe Beach Clean Team and Friars Cliff Beach Care. Both groups are still active and host regular beach cleaning activities.
Back in 2013, Litter Free Coast and Sea worked alongside BCP and local businesses to encourage tourists and locals to take their rubbish home. A banner was installed on the pier – this used the eyes of the waste operatives who cleaned the beach each morning with the message ‘Thank you for keeping our beach clean’.