Since the easing of lockdown earlier in the year, people have flocked to Margate’s beaches in their thousands. With its beautiful golden sand and easy transport links to London, Margate has become the obvious holiday destination for many people unable to travel to continental Europe this summer.
Margate’s infrastructure has struggled to cope with this unprecedented rise in tourism. The litter collection teams have been overwhelmed, toilet facilities are proving inadequate, and security guards have had to be deployed on the beaches.
RISE UP. CLEAN UP. was set up in 2020, aiming to inspire, unite and empower the community to take action as one unit. Local businesses and residents were quick to support the initiative and to date volunteers have collected 437 bags of rubbish, that’s over 3,000 KG of rubbish!
When it comes to littering, education is key and RUCU believe that enforcement and fines can only go so far. Understanding the impact that your litter has on the immediate and wider environment is crucial for affecting long lasting behaviour change.
The Station Installation harnesses Margate’s creative talent to communicate this message in a way that is both playful and informative. Designed as a collaboration between set-designer and RUCU founder Amy Cook, and local design agency Because Creative, the installation will be situated in the ticket hall of Margate Train Station from July 20 and will run throughout summer 2021. This installation is aimed at people visiting Margate for the day, and is designed to raise awareness of the enormous litter problem affecting Margate’s beaches, and the simple ways in which we can all come together to tackle it.
Most tourists enter Margate through the train station ticket hall. Last summer up to 1,500 people arrived at Margate Station each hour, so it became the obvious location to begin this engagement. The installation is a snaking display case filled with 75 bags-worth of rubbish, showing people just how much litter is collected from the beach in one single day. The installation hopes to open people’s eyes to the fact that even small, individual acts of littering add up to an enormous amount of waste.
The installation will also have information on it about the effect that plastics have on our oceans, and advice about how and where to dispose of your litter correctly. The project has been funded by a Crowdfunder campaign and generous donations from local organisations – all of whom are listed on the installation.
With education comes the power to make better decisions, not only for yourself, but for the wider community. RUCU hope that this installation will have a powerful visual impact that will stay with people long after they have visited Margate. This will benefit not only local residents, but also the world’s oceans and their native wildlife.
RUCU co-founder Alanna McGill Tagg said: “This isn’t about shaming people, or preaching to them. It’s about creative a positive message which conveys what Margate means to it’s community, how hard we work to protect the beaches, and how we can all play a role in keeping Margate beautiful.”
For further information visit riseupceanup.co.uk Instagram: @RiseUpCleanUp Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/riseupcleanupmargate Twitter: @CleanRise