On Saturday 13th March members of Orpington and District Angling Association carried out a clean up of the River Cray at Ruxley Gravel Pits as part of the Angling Trust’s Anglers Against Litter campaign.

The river Cray runs through 3 of the 5 lakes and lots of plastic and debris run down the river from Orpington and the Crays and is collected at the mouth of the river where it enters the site. A huge amount was collected from the mouth in very difficult conditions with high winds, hail, rain and a little sunshine. Ruxley Gravel Pits are an SSSI site and home to some rare wildlife and plants, a full clean up of the nature reserve also took place and Children, Ladies and Men all chipped into help.

ODAA Honorary Secretary Steve Easterby commented, “This clearance was essential and most important for Ruxley our members and bailiffs work very hard to keep the lakes and fishing areas tidy but its not possible to stop the plastic bottles and bags from being washed down from the river, most anglers are conservationists and know the wildlife and surroundings of Ruxley better than most so were eager to help to get rid of the litter for the sake of the environment and wildlife. Our members gave up their time to help a highly successful day. We are happy to have the support of The Angling Trust and have become members of their Anglers against Litter Campaign”.

The litter collected included petrol cans, crash helmets, road signs and washing baskets to name just a few. The nature area has been kept in order by volunteers of The Kent Wildlife Trust but with the restrictions of Covid 19 over the last year it been very difficult to safely keep everything up to the normal standards. More river clean ups are planned during the warmer months and the ODAA will be working with Kent Wildlife Trust volunteers on the Environmental Agency owned site.

For more information about the Anglers Against Litter campaign which receives funding from Fishing Licence income through The Environment Agency take a look at the Angling Trust website HERE