COMMUNITY spirited eco-warriors set about clearing up the banks of the River Colne in Colchester in a bid to protect wildlife.

A total of 30 volunteers set off from Haddon Park working their way down the riverbank towards East Bay.

Along the way they collected all manner of rubbish and debris, including traffic cones, scooters, a car exhaust and much more.

Sarah Hazelton, who organised the littler pick on behalf of Essex Beach and River Clean Ups, said: “We collected 28 full bin bags of litter from only 200m along the riverbank path.

“There was approximately 12 bags of cans, plastic and glass bottles which could’ve been recycled if taken somewhere straight after use.

“Now they are so contaminated from being in the mud they are not able to be recycled.

“We also found a pushchair, a knife, a syringe, metal fence, car exhaust, scooter, traffic cone, yoga mat, bike tyre, fake Christmas tree, graffiti cans, food packaging, including sweet and crisp packets, bottle tops, broken glass, dumped concrete bags, metal poles, bicycle mud guards amongst other things.

“I’m so grateful for the 30 volunteers of all ages that generously gave their time to help clear this area.

“We’ll be back to continue clearing along the riverbank for the Great British Spring Clean at the end of March.”