Sunset on Eilean Donan castle Scotland Dave Head

Beach clean guides and resources

4 minute read

Thanks to volunteers like you we are able to take action to tackle our ocean crisis, and positive steps to recover our ocean. On this page you'll find useful guides and helpful resources to help you to help us.

Beachwatch Team

Beach clean organiser guide

If you've signed up to organise a beach clean - firstly we'd like to say a big thank you - every event, survey and litter makes a difference, and we're delighted that you can join us.

Please click on the link below to read, download, save and share our comprehensive guide to organising a beach clean.

The handy guide will provide everything you need to make sure that you and your team stay safe during the clean - as well as what you'll need on the day, and how to provide your litter data after the event. There's also a list of handy numbers, useful tips, and so much more.

Beach clean organiser guide front cover

Simply click on the link below to read and download our handy guide

Keeping volunteers safe during Covid

We want to ensure that our organisers and volunteers remain safe during our beach cleans.

As lock downs lift National and Local Government restrictions are changing, and although we've provided this useful guide to keeping safe - we'd like to remind you to check guidelines before and on the day of your beach clean, and set a limit on your beach clean events in line with government guidances for how many volunteers can attend

Public liability insurance certificate

Below is a link to download a copy of our public liability insurance certificate. Some landowners may ask to see a copy of this document before giving you permission to go ahead with the event.

In order to be covered by our insurance event organisers must make time for appropriate planning, risk assessment and minimisation prior to their event.

Organisers that have completed a risk assessment for their events, provide health and safety briefings before the cleans and get consent from parents or guardians for under 16s to take part in the clean are covered by our insurance.

Beach owner permission letter template

We've created a simple template for a letter you can send to whoever owns the beach that you'll be organising. It details how the event will be run, and why it's so important, and what will happen on the day.

If you are wondering who owns the beach stretch we recommend contacting your local council, if they don't own it they should be able to tell you who does.

Risk assessment template

Our risk assessment has been developed to include the most likely risks associated with the beach environment and the activity of beach cleaning with your group.

Due to the changing nature of this environment and variations between risks at different locations, you must adapt this document to suit the location of your event and make note of any additional risks present on the day. There are blank lines available to add risks specific to your event.

You can download our template below, don't forget to make sure you complete and review it on the day of your event.

We love sharing photos and film from our beach clean events to show the full extent of the issue of coastal litter as well as the incredible work that our volunteers do to help tackle the problem.

As part of your beach clean we'd love you to share those photos and videos with us, but we also take consent very seriously, and if organisers, or anyone involved in the beach clean are planning on sharing these with us we ask that you complete the attached form.

Volunteer briefing guide for organisers

Volunteer briefing guide for organisers

Our briefing guide will help to keep everyone safe and informed during the event

We've put together a handy guide explaining how to brief the volunteers taking part in your beach clean and survey.

Include in the guide is a brief background to the Marine Conservation Society, an explanation of why our beach cleans and survey data is so crucial to the health of our oceans - and some important details about health and safety on the day.

Download the guide below to take on the day.

In order to be covered by our public liability insurance you must ensure that you have a competed parental consent form for anyone under the age of 16 years.

Below is a form for you to complete for each young person with their parent, carer or guardian. Once you have completed the form please take a photo or scan the document and send to [email protected].

We will securely file the consent on your behalf and you must shred the original document and delete the scan or photo in order to comply with our strict data protection protocol.

A helpful guide to litter sources

When you record litter items during a beach clean you're not only helping to keep our coast free of litter and pollution, you're also helping us record where the litter has come from.

To help you understand a bit more about the items you'll be recording we've created this guide to litter sources, to help you understand where it all comes from.

Please note: this guide to litter sources is currently being reviewed and updated

Beach clean litter survey form - updated

Snapshot of the litter survey form

Our litter survey form will help you log vital data as part of your clean

Please note: this survey form has now been replaced with an updated version. To ensure that our data remains consistent please use this new form.

Download our litter survey sheet below to log the litter you collect during your clean.

Aside from the easy guide to help you complete sections as you tally up your finds there's also a handy ruler and a list of useful contacts should you, or any of your team need them too.

We recommend taking a handful of paper forms with you, for people who may not be using our new Beachwatch App

Beach clean summary form updated

Snap shot of beach clean summary form

Our beach clean summary form allows you to collect all the information you need to submit your litter survey

Please note: this survey form has now been replaced with an updated version. To ensure that our data remains consistent please use this new form.

Click on the link below access our simple form to ensure that you collect all of the data you need on the day of your beach clean.

Here you can add details about your beach clean such as weather conditions, the location, and any unusual items you might have found.

You can also summarise all of the litter survey forms that your team have completed in one easy place.