What the Storm Blew In

Micro-plastic Pollution from Storm Eleanor

Ever keen to catch a dramatic bit of weather at the seaside, our visit to Bude in the wake of Storm Eleanor bought an unexpected moment of sobriety. Everywhere you looked on the beach, tiny colourful plastic flecks were mixed in with the sand, swirling elegantly in the rock pools, dancing under foot in the still-powerful winds. Apparently the storm had churned up this nightmare pick-n-mix from where it had lain buried on the seabed, and distributed it in vast quantities across the beaches of Cornwall.

I was particularly captivated by the above display of technicolour shards and beads waltzing around a little inlet. It looked so pretty, despite my knowledge of the serious and sombre impact such litter has on the wildlife that comes into contact with it. I stopped to take some photographs. Then, against the code of a true photo-documenter scooped as much as I could carry into my hands and braced my way back to the car through the battering wind.

At the time of writing, this anti-treasure sits drying out on a baby muslin, waiting to be employed for something meaningful. A plastic-litter snow globe scene? Reclaimed material hacki sack? Or just, in a simple glass jar where I see it daily, inspiration to keep going with the cause.