Residents and visitors are united in their appreciation of this wonderful place; until 1980 there was no scavenging service in the island, so all the rubbish of the most recent 10,000 years was accumulating steadily. There were great improvements over the next twenty years, but the system was still imperfect - fortunately we now have a conventional waste-collection service and limited re-cycling facilities. People have responded wonderfully - all roadsides and pathways have been cleared of litter and occupants have removed rubbish from the surroundings of the homes and places of business. So since 2013 we have made the final push - striving to become the first Hebridean Island to be Rubbish-Free!

In that first summer of 2013, we cleared the entire coastline, 50 miles and over 1000 bags of rubbish plus many tonnes of old wheels, fishboxes and myriad floats.

It was a brilliant success and now continues on a care-and-maintenance basis. Limited quantities of rubbish come ashore on every tide, but it is easily handled provided volunteers continue to help. Please help - every single piece of rubbish removed from the shoreline helps maintain the pristine beauty of the island and is also a boost to the natural environment. The distance is still 50 miles, but in current times we anticipate finding the equivalent of perhaps only 500 bags of rubbish - all the same, many hands make light work.

You can be kept up to date with progress on Facebook if you join Friends of Colonsay. We hope that you will take a bag and spend 5 minutes on some part of our coastline, stick to the high-tide and avoid anything sharp, dangerous or unfamiliar.



Throughout each summer, the project continues. Why not plan a foray of your own? Ideally such sessions last about 90 - 120 minutes, they are hugely rewarding and provide excellent exercise ... they can also be a great prelude to a picnic or barbecue.

We have a poster.

We thought about Health and Safety.

We even have a welcome message.

Please remember - you do not have to join any organised session. We are moving to independent efforts - if you need them, black bags are provided at the Bookshop - but we ask you to return unused bags and please tell us where you have left the fruit of your labour, so that we can arrange for it to be collected and recycled.



If it is an unfamiliar, hazardous, heavy or awkward item - do not touch it, but do report it to Kevin Byrne or leave details at the Bookshop.

Do not work below the tideline, do supervise all youngsters.

Please beware of windburn and sunburn. Do not work alone unless somebody knows where you are.



Do be careful - as for any other part of your general activities, your voluntary participation is this project is entirely at your own risk; it should only happen if you have complete confidence in the skills and abilities of all members of your party.

The project is under the auspices of Colonsay Community Council, and is co-ordinated by Kevin Byrne Tel 01951 200320 on behalf of Colonsay Tourism Marketing Group. Rubbish Bags and other basics are sponsored by Colonsay Bookshop and other generous supporters including MOWI and Colonsay Brewery. Re-cycling in Colonsay is arranged with the help of William Joll and recovery operations are co-ordinated by David Hobhouse with the help of other members of the agricultural community.