COVENTRY residents are being urged to take more pride in their canal after volunteers pulled more than 15 bags of rubbish out of the water.
The Canal & River Trust, the charity which cares for the waterways, is appealing to Coventrians to stop littering in the canal.
The call comes after volunteers from the Anker Valley Canoe Club, based at Hartshill, filled more than three open canoes with rubbish removed from the water during their annual clean up.
Among the haul was a large amount of plastic bottles which can cause serious problems for wildlife.
Members of the canoe club, aged between seven and 70, paddled along a two mile stretch of the canal to remove litter which has found its way into the canal.
Simon Ricketts from the Anker Valley Canoe Club said: “This year there seemed to be much more litter than in previous years which is really sad.
“As regular users of the canal we want to make sure that we play our part in maintaining its upkeep and natural beauty by giving some time to help remove the litter.
“People need to realise that the canal is an asset for everyone and that by carelessly dumping their rubbish they’re spoiling it for everyone else.”
Andrew Morris, maintenance manager for the Canal & River Trust, thanked the volunteers for their efforts.
He added: “Unfortunately a minority of people think that it’s OK to selfishly dump their rubbish and we’re really grateful to the volunteers for pitching in and clearing it up but ultimately it shouldn’t come to that.
“People should take responsibility for their rubbish and not leave it for someone else to clean up their mess.”
Visit www.canalrivertrust.org.uk to find out more about the Coventry Canal including events, activities and volunteering opportunities.