Spotlight is on youngsters helping to clean up the Limehouse Cut

PUBLISHED: 10:39 23 August 2016 | UPDATED: 10:43 23 August 2016

Floating algae that was silting up the Limehouse Cut

Floating algae that was silting up the Limehouse Cut

Canal & River Trust

Youngsters in London’s East End have been helping to rid the Limehouse Cut of litter and to clean up the water chocking with algae.

Limehouse Cut by Bartlett Park after its big clean-upLimehouse Cut by Bartlett Park after its big clean-up

Teenagers from Poplar’s Spotlight creative youth space volunteered with the Canal & River Trust, the charity that looks after Britain’s waterways, and the Moo Canoes organisation at Limehouse Basin, to collect bags of rubbish.

The litter they collected included bottles, cans and two tennis rackets and a ball along a mile-long stretch of the Limehouse Cut, from the basin to Bartlett Park.

The Canal Trust has been active cleaning up The Cut, which links the Thames and Regent’s Canal to the River Lea bypassing the loop around the Isle of Dogs. It had become silted with algae and weeds and spoilt with litter.

“We have a group volunteers working with us on the stretch of the Limehouse Cut,” Canal & River Trust youth volunteer coordinator Marlon Gibbins explained.

Now Limehouse Cut is safer for canal narrowboats to plyNow Limehouse Cut is safer for canal narrowboats to ply

“But this is the first time we have worked with youngsters in the area this way. They showed enthusiasm and were particularly interested in the conservation of the waterways, asking questions about the wildlife and how we can better recycle objects that we pick out of the canal.”

The trust has teamed up with the Spotlight centre to get youngsters from Poplar and Limehouse involved with their local canals and waterways, including the Regent’s Canal, Hertford Cut near Victoria Park and the Lea as well as the Limehouse Cut.

It is developing a youth programme along The Cut to involve youngsters in projects teaching them the environmental importance of east London’s waterways.

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