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'Take 5' Litterpick Volunteers Clean Up City Canal Corridor

Chris Satori

On Saturday 10th March 2018, a voluntary litter pick and multi-agency fisheries patrol was conducted on the Lancaster Canal, in and around Lancaster, with the aim of improving this much-loved space for all users, as well as providing a high-visibility deterrent against wildlife and fisheries crime.

This was organised by the Angling Trust and Pike Anglers Club, and included Lancashire Constabulary Wildlife Crime Officers, Environment Agency Fisheries Enforcement Officers, Angling Trust Volunteer Bailiffs and several members of the Pike Anglers Club, who run the fishery on the canal.

Several large bags of unpleasant rubbish were collected from the towpath and canal and disposed of, leaving city centre stretches of the canal in a clean and much more pleasant condition. The team then split up and conducted several bailiff patrols from Garstang to Skerton, checking anglers' licenses and permits as well as looking for signs of illegal poaching, fly-tipping and other rural crime.

Dave Lees, North West Regional Enforcement Manager, Angling Trust said:
"Today's joint patrol and 'Take 5' litter pick on the Lancaster Canal is a great example of partnership working. All worked hard together to clean and protect this valuable community asset. It should be noted that none of the collected litter could be attributed to anglers, which is testament to how well the canal is run by the Pike Anglers Club. The 'Take 5' campaign is run by the Angling Trust/Environment Agency and encourages all anglers to remove, not only their own rubbish , but to 'take 5' additional items of rubbish with them, to help clean up the environment."

John Threlfall, Fisheries Manager, Pike Anglers Club said:
"A great morning to be on the bank conducting a litter pick (Take 5) and bailiff patrol with multi agencies including Angling Trust voluntary bailiffs, Lancashire police, Environment Agency officers and our members. Working together in my opinion is the only way we can effectively tackle the issues that angling currently faces and these issues need tackling "now" more so than ever before. A special thanks to the Angling Trust for pulling this together and for the attendance of all parties / volunteers. From a
personal point of view it was fantastic to see just what could be achieved whilst working together to protect this special waterway not only now but also into the future."

Damien Linney, Environment Agency Fisheries Enforcement Officer added:
"Working together with our partners and volunteers is a fantastic way to ensure rod licence compliance and safeguard angling and recreation on the Lancaster Canal. The very positive comments we received from people enjoying the canal, shows just how valued the canal is by the local community."