Wandle cleanup: December 2009: Merton

The one when we were sponsored by…

Buff logo_160x160

For the first time ever, this was a Wandle Trust cleanup sponsored by an outdoor company: Original Buff, makers of multifunctional headwear who’d been introduced to us by Laneo, a global initiative connecting people, brands and environmental groups so that they can support each other in cleaning up the planet.

(A most excellent idea, we’d have to agree!)

health and safety briefing

Maybe it was just another mark of favour from the gods of outdoor wholesale… but following the wettest November on record, the middle Wandle was running mercifully low and clear by the time we met in Merton between Plough Lane and the Graveney confluence.

all in the river

During past cleanups we’d already addressed a stretch just upstream, so this was a move down into previously-untackled territory.  

And it showed, with at least three eel-filled (yes, really) motorbikes lurking just below the surface…

pulling up bike

all together now

bike over railings 3

… besides a car seat and rolling acres of carpet…

car seat


… and even a mangled collection of bicycles, still securely padlocked together but now carefully stripped of all parts that weren’t

Sarah with bikes

As befitted our Christmas cleanup, Guinness cake and mince pies met with a rapturous reception at coffee time:

Guinness cake

mince pies

Inspired by Jo, even the gazebo had a festive air…

Christmas bells

… so somehow no-one was surprised when Santa bobbed to the surface of the river shortly afterwards, hard on the heels of last month’s warbling leprechaun (though, of the two, St Nick looked rather the worse for wear):

Erica and Santa

All the way to dusk, the trolleys and barrows of rubbish just kept coming…

trolley of rubbish

wheelbarrow of rubbish

trolley with pipes

… until we finally wrapped up with a triumphant team photo beside several tonnes of waterlogged rubbish, all from just 50m of river…

team photo

… and a general exodus for well-deserved Christmas pints at the popular Leather Bottle!


Thanks to all our volunteers: Allan, Andy B, Andy K, Anna, Carol, Carolyn, Dave, Diana, Dominic, Erica, Felix, Forrest, Gideon, Henry, James F, James Y, Jamie, Jane, Jason, Jo H, Jo S, Justin, Ken, Max, Mike H, Mike S, Natasha, Neil, Nick M, Nick S, Nico, Olivia, Paul, Peter, Rigby, Rob, Roger, Rory, Sally, Sarah, Sihong, Sue B, Sue V, and Theo

… as well as Merton Council – and of course Original Buff and Laneo – for generously supporting our efforts.

2 thoughts on “Wandle cleanup: December 2009: Merton

  1. Pingback: Original Buff® Sponsored Cleanup - UK

  2. Pingback: Original Buff® Sponsored Cleanup – UK « Laneo Blog

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