Participants in a previous Pick & Play

Participants in a previous Pick & Play

Outdoor enthusiasts are being offered free activities – as a reward for cleaning up a national park.

The annual Pick & Play will be staged in May and is open to anyone to participate, with no charge.

Anyone signing up for the event will spend half the day clearing litter from a site in the Peak District, and the rest of the time taking part in their chosen activity.

The final decision on the venue has not yet been made, but organisers say it will be in the central part of the national park near Hathersage.

A spokesperson for the organisers said: “The Peak District national park is Britain’s oldest and busiest park and every year it is visited by many millions of people from all around the world.

“Most users take great care to ensure it is well looked after and it is a stunning place to enjoy, but we do have an growing problem with litter and you really don’t have to look too far to see all sorts of rubbish left behind by picnickers or carelessly tossed from car windows.”

Independent outdoor activity provider Peak Mountaineering is behind the clean-up event, and has teamed up with the Peak Park Conservation Volunteers in the venture. This will be the fifth year the event has run.

The spokesperson said: “This unique event invites volunteers to help clear up the national park and then we use our instructional expertise to offer a range of outdoor activities.

“The event is completely free of charge and it has grown each year. In 2017 we welcomed over 120 people who collectively cleared up around 140kg of rubbish. With your help we hope to make 2018 even more successful.”

Pick & Play will run from 9.30am to 4pm on Sunday 13 May. Participants will need outdoor clothing and footwear, plus a picnic lunch. Technical equipment for activities will be provided by the organisers, who will also equip members of the public with gloves and litter grabbers for the clean-up.

The spokesperson said: “We’ll meet up for registration and organise everyone into groups. Some people head off to collect litter in the morning while others do outdoor activities and then we’ll meet up again for lunch before swapping over for the afternoon.

“Everyone usually spends half their time on each part although we do get some participants who only want to collect litter and that’s fine too.

“We have a great range of activities available and no previous experience is needed. We are still exploring other possibilities but already there is climbing, a guided ranger nature walk, abseiling, bushcraft, orienteering, weaselling and a navigation workshop.”

The non-profit event is being supported by the British Mountaineering Council’s Peak area, outdoor brands Rab, Nikwax, Osprey Europe, Hydroflask and several local businesses. The event is also supported by many members of the Association of Mountaineering Instructors.

Anyone interested in taking part is asked to complete an online booking form, stating Pick & Play in the course title box.

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