East Lothian café signs My Beach Your Beach pledge

The popular Fisherrow Harbour Café has been recognised by environmental charity for the work it is doing to keep Scotland beautiful by pledging support to the My Beach Your Beach campaign.

The campaign encourages everyone to take better care of Scotland’s beaches and help improve bathing water quality.  Businesses within walking distance of the target beaches have been asked to sign the ‘Business Pledge’ this year, committing to at least three activities to help protect the sand and sea.  Pledge actions include discouraging litter by clearing up the area outside the business premises daily, switching to more sustainable packaging options, or sharing campaign content on online channels to help raise awareness of the challenges our beaches and bathing waters face.

Stella Thompson, from Harbour Café, said: We are so extremely lucky to live in such a beautiful part of the world and as a business and personally we want to keep it that way.

“Our business works alongside Musselburgh Streetclean, which is a volunteer organisation who arrange litter picking events most weekends. We are a collection point for the pink litter bags, which are supplied by our local council, and once full they can be placed by a public bin and the council will collect. We have recently acquired a doggie poo bag share box so now anyone who needs a bag can take one and if they have any spare can leave one. We encourage people to clean up after their dogs.”

This year, the campaign focused on seven of the country’s well-loved beaches through targeted interventions to change behaviour. The selected beaches - Ayr, Troon, Saltcoats/Ardrossan, Irvine, Fisherrow Sands, Portobello and Kinghorn - have all faced challenges in improving the quality of their bathing water as measured by SEPA.

Three further businesses pledged support in 2022, joining five others from previous years.  They were:

  • The Inventor's Gin Co Ltd, a craft gin company in Ardrossan
  • O’Neil Gas Services, heating services in Ayr
  • Kilmarnock (Barassie) Golf Club, near Troon

Heather Mclaughlin, Campaigns Coordinator with Keep Scotland Beautiful, said: “We are grateful to Harbour Café for the support shown by employees for their local beach. 

"The commitment shown to the campaign, to making it easy to do the right thing by acting as a hub for litter picking and dog poo bags helps to cement the café as a real community asset.

"Not only is the café doing what it can to improve its environmental impact, while still making great coffee, it is also doing its bit for the environment at a time when nature needs all our help.”

Since 2018, My Beach Your Beach has worked to raise awareness of bathing water quality and the role we can all play, whether on the beach or at home, to protect the sand and sea.  Simple habits can help improve our bathing waters, including taking litter away and leaving the beach cleaner than you found it, bagging and binning dog poo to keep everyone safe, and not feeding the gulls.

The campaign, funded by the Scottish Government and supported by SEPA, is being led by Keep Scotland Beautiful to sit alongside its Upstream Battle and Clean Up Scotland campaigns and annual Beach Awards.

Find out more about the campaign, and how your business can take the pledge on the My Beach Your Beach webpages.

18 October 2022

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