FISHING nets, fuel cans, plastic bags, sacking and even a garden fork were all dragged from the Helford River by volunteers using kayaks on Saturday.

The clean up was organised by the Helford Marine Conservation Group, and saw 16 |people give up their time to help tidy up the beauty spot.

The event was declared a success by organiser Jess Hirons, despite the showery conditions and cold wind. Using kayaks allowed the team to reach the more inaccessible inlets on the river, with the rubbish taken to the Orca Sea Safaris rib, which also provided rescue cover. Jess said: “This was a very successful day. Not only were we able to help clean up a very conservationally important area, but we also had a lot of fun in doing so.”

Pat Kilminster and Ken Gillian had come down from Bristol to see their daughter Lindsay Leyden and all three had taken to the water, while Falmouth student, Louise Young was one of the kayak first timers taking part, and she really enjoyed the experience.

The group was led by Claire Eatock, a lecturer from Falmouth Marine School and the kayaks were provided by Lizard Adventure. About half the volunteers were from the Devon and Cornwall Sea Birds, a network of female kayakers in the South West who meet up at various locations throughout the area.

Their motto of ‘bring a boat and a cake’ was in evidence on Saturday when the |volunteers stopped for lunch at Tremayne Quay, and cake was high on the menu. It is hoped that this will become a regular event, with the local community getting involved.

The Helford has been designated a special area of conservation because it has many rare species, including eel grass, maerl and seahorses. If you would like to help in keeping this beautiful and environmentally important area of Cornwall clear of rubbish, the Helford Voluntary Marine Conservation group holds regular beach cleans.

Contact Jessica Hirons on for details, or visit the VMCA website at | for |further information about the conservation work being carried out in the area.