PURE Mile group ask visitors to “Take out what you bring in”

Although the environmental project, Pure, recorded its lowest amount of illegal dumping collected from the Wicklow/Dublin Uplands in 2019, litter continues to be a problem in The Garden County.  

Last year Pure removed 150 tonnes of illegal dumping from the beautiful, scenic, Wicklow/Dublin Mountains, when compared to ten years previous in 2009, they removed 344 tonnes, which is a 56% reduction.  A significant amount of the rubbish removed by Pure was collected by the numerous volunteers involved in the Pure Mile.  Thousands of volunteers are participating in the Pure Mile Project and this year there are over 550 miles of roads, mountains, woodlands, valleys, and upland amenities being adopted, with hundreds of litter picks and cleanups having already taken place.    

The recent fine weather, coupled with the easing of travel restrictions, has seen an increase of visitors to the Wicklow Uplands, and with this, many areas have witnessed and increase in abandoned camping sites and litter.  One area affected over the weekend was the Glenmalure Valley, and due to this, both Pure, and the Glenmalure Pure Mile Group, are requesting that all visitors to the scenic Glenmalure valley, and the Wicklow Uplands to, ‘TAKE OUT WHAT YOU BRING IN’.  

Ian Davis, Manager of Pure commented, ‘The Glenmalure Pure Mile Group, and the Pure Project, are working extremely hard at keeping the Glenmalure valley clean and pristine, the way it should be.  The majority of people who visit Glenmalure respect the valley, however, there are some who don’t, and it’s disappointing and frustrating that a minority of visitors are running it for everyone.’


In relation to the recent littering and abandoned camping material, a member of the Glenmalure Pure Mile Committee stated, ‘We responded quickly by organising a well-supported emergency litter pick to tackle the waste left behind after the weekend. This ensures that it does not cause any further environmental damage and it lets people know that littering in valley will not be tolerated’.  Over 40 people attended the cleanup and items removed included, tents, camping chairs, sleeping bags, barbeques, bottles, cans, and numerous other items, which all were discarded on the landscape.

The Pure partnership approach, incorporating statutory and non-statutory organisations, and members of the public, has proven extremely successful in combating illegal dumping in the Wicklow/Dublin Uplands and over the past three years they have recorded an annual reduction in illegal dumping activity.  This reduction in dumping is a direct correlation with the increase of Pure Mile areas.  The Pure Mile makes a huge difference to the Wicklow environment, especially in areas that are affected by littering and illegal dumping.  Pure Mile volunteers have totally transformed the upland regions and because of their dedication, determination, and enthusiasm, they have not only reduced illegal dumping, but in some areas, they have eliminated the problem.  

Pure provide all Pure Mile groups with signage, Pure Mile bags, gloves, litter pickers and Pure Mile high-vis vests, and they also remove all of the rubbish collected by the groups.  The success of this environmental community project clearly demonstrates that people do care about the environment, and, that people want to make a difference to improve and enhance the environment.   The role of the Pure Project is to facilitate groups, providing them with equipment, advice, and support, so they can make that difference. 

The concept of The Pure Mile is pure and simple, Your Environment, Your Community, Your Heritage.


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