We hope those of you who attended our meeting on International Women’s Day on Wednesday 8th March enjoyed the evening when we had a fascinating talk from Lizzie the environmental paddle-boarder who had paddled over 400 miles from London to the Lake District documenting with photographs the amount of plastic waste she came across.
Louise, our President, introduced Lizzie Carr who is a paddle boarder and environmentalist. There was a question and answer session between Louise and Lizzie. We heard about Lizzie’s passion for the outdoors when she was younger, moving on to her busy working life in London through to discovering she had cancer at the age of 26. This was followed by a time of recuperation on the Isles of Scilly where she had a brief trial on a paddleboard. This is where she says she reconnected with her love of nature & water. Eventually returning to London she found a paddle-board group and this is where she also learned about the growing mountain of plastics found in rivers and waterways of the UK. She told us that over 80% of all plastics found in oceans start from inland. In May 2016 she decided to paddle the 400 plus miles from the London area to the Lake District and to plot every piece of plastic she found. She took over 2,000 photos along the route. She mentioned that she is shortly to organise taster sessions where people can come and have a trial of paddle-boards and canoes. She will post the details on her website, which is www.lizzieoutside.co.uk and assured us that she has never fallen in the water as paddle-boards she says are easy to balance on because they are wider and longer than surfboards. There is also a YouTube video of the raft she built with items of discarded plastic. She feels strongly that if everyone does a little to reducing the plastic in the environment then it will become healthier for us and for future generations as plastic is finding its way into our marine animals and eventually through the food chain into our food.