Wonderful support from Sainsbury’s for coastal initiative

As the year draws to a close, Coast Care, the coastal conservation initiative in north Northumberland, is celebrating the end of a wonderful five-month partnership with Sainsbury’s in Alnwick.
Coast Care Sainsbury’s Alnwick - Becky Bass

Sainsbury’s Alnwick staff including Store Manager Emma Nevin (3rd left) and PR Ambassador Anita McDonald (far right) with Kristian Purchase and Emma Lusby from the Coast Care Initiative. Image by: Becky Bass.

In June, the store on Willowburn Avenue chose Coast Care as its chosen charity of the year and from day one, support from staff has been amazing.

A total of 18 staff spent 126 hours volunteering on a number of outdoor tasks with the Coast Care staff and volunteers who look after the landscape from Amble in the south, to Berwick in the north, stretching west as far as Lowick, Belford and Alnwick.

Tasks throughout the year included clearing branches allowing safe access for visitors walking through Arnold Memorial nature reserve in Craster, clearing scrub on Embleton Quarry reserve allowing wildflowers to grow before heading to Seahouses Primary School to create a wildlife garden and composting bays.

In June and August, staff removed non-native invasive plants from the dunes at Beadnell and on Holy Island - both of which are sites of specific scientific interest and in July, they headed to Boulmer to help Longhoughton Parish Council maintain its wildflower meadow by collecting wildflower seeds, which will be stored and then sown at Boulmer and other local site.

Donations by the company included buckets on the tills which collected £346.72, ‘100 years’ hamper bags raffled off at coffee morning and celebrations as a thank you to volunteers and bags for life donated for use during beach cleans instead of bin bags.

Speaking about the support from Sainsbury’s, Coast Care manager, Becky Bass said: “It has been a great opportunity working with Sainsbury’s staff over the last year and to have some much needed help with some of our practical conservation tasks. We hope that the staff who volunteered with us learnt some new skills whilst making a difference within their local environment and most of all, enjoyed their time out on this beautiful coastline.”

Coast Care is a volunteering initiative based at Seahouses, it is supported thanks to money raised by National Lottery players through a grant of £522,600 from The National Lottery Heritage Fund and is organised by Northumberland Wildlife Trust, the Northumberland Coast AONB Partnership and Seahouses Development Trust.