A GROUP of hard-working volunteers have reached a major milestone in their battle to keep Stevenston beach and other community spaces tidy.

The Friends of Stevenston Beach have now removed an amazing 2.5 million pieces of rubbish after another day of collecting litter – with more than 1.5 million items of litter removed from Stevenston beach alone.

And North Ayrshire Council has extended its thanks to the group – who have supported the local authority’s hard working Streetscene team over a number of years.

Ian Cassidy, of Friends of Stevenston Beach, said: “I, along with the volunteers, have been cleaning Stevenston beach continuously for over five years.

“The success of these endeavours has only been made possible by working in close partnership with the Streetscene strategy and operational teams.

“This fantastic local nature reserve is once again a source of civic pride, with the local community also playing their part.

“Responsible visits across our community spaces is an integral part of sustaining a clean, healthy and safe environment. Now more than ever.”

Councillor Jim Montgomerie, North Ayrshire’s new Cabinet Member for Green New Deal and Sustainability, said: “This is a fabulous effort and everyone at the council want to say a massive thanks to the Friends of Stevenston Beach for everything they have done.

“You just need to look at the beach to see the impact that they have had.

“Their determination and commitment really is second to none.

“Our Streetscene team have a massive area to cover and do their very best but are indebted to volunteers, like the Friends of Stevenston Beach, for help.

“We are all in it together and want the very best for our communities.

“In the wake of World Environment Day and volunteer week we would encourage others to get in touch to join the fight against litter in our aim toward a litter-free society.”

Over the years, the council has helped numerous groups with equipment in their efforts to keep communities clean.

“They are keen for any other groups from across North Ayrshire to get in touch

If you would like to help out with similar community projects, please contact the council at streetscene@north-ayrshire.gov.uk.