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3 weeks ago

Brighter Uckfield
Matrix Events Limited.If you are going organise a triathlon including a bike ride starting from Hever Castle and passing through the Sussex countryside, and if you are going to hand out hundreds (and possibly thousands) of single-use “High 5” plastic water bottles and energy gel packs from “feeding stations” like this one on Ashdown Forest, can you also please make it clear to your competitors that they should not be chucking these same items on the roadsides that the councils and volunteers try so hard to keep clean? Or if, as one of your volunteers at this feeding station said, throwing the bottles on the roadside is “part of it” (I.e. a triathlon), can you then carry out your own litter pick of the whole 60km route afterwards? It seems unlikely that you are allowed to leave the grounds of Hever Castle littered after an event, so please could you make sure that you don’t leave our countryside like this either? Please note that this is not an anti-cyclist post - the majority are responsible athletes and no doubt the organisers and roadside marshalls do not want this to happen - but please, do try to make this a priority, and if you are taking the time to put countless direction signs all along the route, please also put a few signs reminding the less considerate to do the right thing.Please share to pages along the route, to raise awareness of this issue.UPDATE: As at 7pm, the feeding station was still there, with plastic bags blowing around the lay-by (which obviously we could’t leave). By 8.30pm, the table had been removed, and the remainder tidied up, presumably by the organisers, for which we thank them - the ton bags of empty plastic bottles were still there, hopefully for collection soon. A tour of part of the route showed there were still around 10 bottles and some gel packs visible on the roadside, perhaps some more hidden in the undergrowth which volunteers will get to later in the year no doubt. Those still there are in difficult places to access, fast corners etc, so may be there for some time unfortunately.The Brighter Ashdown Forest group believes that the organisers were going to clear up the route (or have already), and to be fair it looks better than on previous occasions. Giving cyclists the benefit of the doubt, it is conceivable that some of these bottles were “fumbled”, which if you are on a time trial you are not going to turn around and pick up.Overall though, still disappointing, and there look like there will be other cycle races following the same route over the summer. If anybody knows if there is an association this can be taken up with, please let us know. ... See MoreSee Less
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