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Snowdonia-Active News Item

Run Tidy 04/11/2013

The recent growth in the number of organised running and outdoor adventure events in north Wales is a testament to the region's importance as an outdoor activity destination, deservedly known as the 'Heart of Adventure'.

Event organisers, Jayne Lloyd and Matt Ward, have also noticed the amount of litter and waste these events can generate as an unfortunate by-product and in response have launched a not-for-profit initiative to tackle the problem. The primary aim of Run Tidy®/Rheda'n Daclus is to promote a sense of environmental responsibility among those attending and participating in outdoor activity events.

Snowdonia Marathon organiser, Jayne Lloyd, said: "Our aim is also to reduce the amount of waste from these events by getting the organisers themselves to consider the issue. Some have been adopting 'green practices' for a while, but for some it's still low-down on their list of priorities. Run Tidy will be looking to engage with authorities and organisations who can work with us on these messages along with litter clearing."

Jayne added: "We would like to be in a position in the future to offer event organisers a 'green waste plan' for their event, Run Tidy litter bins and reduced cost bin bags that will be given to their teams of feed station and directional marshals. Right down to explaining how waste can be disposed of in the right way, via their councils or local authorities, after the event."

Matt Ward, who also produces the mountain running website, Mud Sweat and Tears, is keen to stress the importance of self-responsibility among participants in how they dispose of their rubbish: "I'd like to see runners and cyclists think twice before throwing their gel wrappers to the ground and instead put it in a pocket for the bin later."

"We see the initiative as something that will be self-perpetuating. We don't want to become the rubbish police, and neither do we want to be the Wombles, wandering round the country at events clearing-up afterwards. But we feel that if we can instil our messages in the outdoor community, starting at running events, then that is a good start."

Run Tidy® is just getting-up and running (sorry about the pun), and it's planned that the website will become a valuable source of advice and information on minimising as well as managing waste at running and adventure sport events.

Jayne said: "We aim to add an affiliation system whereby events can get the Run Tidy 'badge' to portray to their runners that they've signed up to this 'movement'. We will also be going to the governing bodies and Government itself, to see if they can help us achieve some of these aims.

"Other than that we aren't really too sure where this will end up, but feel that if we can make a few people think twice about their rubbish disposal at a race or event, we will have gone some way to making runners and races Run Tidy!"

The inititaive is currently in conjunction with the Snowdon Race, Trail Marathon Wales, Snowdonia Marathon and Snowdonia National Park although other organisations will no doubt be affiliating themselves with Run Tidy over the coming months

Reconciling conservation and recreation is an increasingly important aspect of concern for the outdoor sector in north Wales. An Environmental Outdoor Charter has recently been developed to help address this important issue.

Photo: Matt Ward together with ultra-runner and TV Presenter, Lowri Morgan, at the recent Snowdonia Marathon and the launch of the Run Tidy initiative. © Ray Wood

Topic: Run Tidy®, Reconciling Recreation and Conservation.

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