Residents in Bournemouth question the amount of single-use plastic used in Marathon goody bags

Residents in Bournemouth question the amount of single-use plastic used in Marathon goody bags

Image: Twitter 

As thousands of runners take part in the Bournemouth marathon festival, which included a 5K, 10K, half marathon and marathon event, residents have questioned why so much plastic is used in race-day goody bags.

Whilst the environmental-impact of running sits at the forefront of many runners and organiser’s minds, going plastic-free on race day has it’s challenges. This year Bournemouth marathon tried to cut down on plastic, by issuing some finishers with boxes instead of plastic goody bags. One resident has taken to social media to share images of the amount of plastic dropped by runners following the event, and is calling out to organisers to think twice about filling the race bags with plastic.

Related: 6 of the best environmentally-friendly running brands you might not have heard of 

Talking to a local news publication, Sue Coates, who volunteers with community litter action group Dorset Devils said despite finding very little rubbish on the beaches, she was shocked to see the amount of plastic dumped in the Lower Gardens. Saying, “as I walked into the gardens there was just a sea of rubbish. From talking to people who had taken part I realised most of this stuff was coming from the goody bags that were being handed out.

“Pretty much everything in them was wrapped in plastic. A lot of the bottles I found on the floor had hardly been drunk from, but for me the flimsy wrapping is even more concerning because it can blow away very easily.

“I couldn’t really believe an event that is so good and so well-organised which has taken place for quite a few years now, could not think about the effect on the environment, especially with the finish by the sea."

Coates believes having water stations to refill bottles by the finish line, or more recycling bins for runners on race day could be the answer.

Also in the news this week:

Record number of runners take part in the Oxford Half Marathon, but are disappointed not to receive a medal at the finish line 

Cardiff half marathon organisers ‘100% satisfied’ with medical plan after two runners died after the event