A DUVET, old shoes and plastic bottles were among the 40 kilogrammes of rubbish collected from the banks of the Tweed near Melrose last weekend.

Pupils, parents and staff from St Mary's and Melrose Primary schools litter-picked around the Gattonside Chain Bridge.

The 15 volunteers spent more than an hour collecting discarded rubbish from a 300 metre stretch of land next the river.

The litter pick was part of a larger campaign in Melrose to discourage single-use plastics.

Organiser Tom Rawson told us: "We are working with the marine conservation charity Surfers Against Sewage to reduce the use of single-use plastics in Melrose and across the Borders.

"Saturday’s litter pick showed exactly what happens to some of that plastic when you throw it away.

"There really is no 'away' - it all has to go somewhere and throwing it in the river just passes an awful problem on to somewhere else downstream, around our coast or further afield.”

The Plastic Free Melrose campaign aims to encourage and recognise the efforts of local businesses as they seek to reduce their use of single-use plastic items like bags, coffee cups, straws, stirrers, hangers, packaging, drinks bottles, food wrapping and other items.

Businesses that can prove that they have eliminated three or more single-use plastics stand to gain Surfers Against Sewage accreditation, including a wooden plaque and certificate, as Plastic Free Champions.