Mermaid with a message

During the screenings of ‘A Plastic Ocean’ at Bristol Aquarium, I couldn’t help but notice, they had an in-house mermaid … The next month, I was a real mermaid! 

Not any ol’ mermaid, but Shell, an Aussie mermaid with a message …

mermaid-1.jpgI dug out my Aussie accent, which even had the parents fooled! And kept in character of a real mermaid the whole time.

When children asked where Shell was from I was able to show them on a globe I had taken. The East Coast of Australia. Asked how she got to Bristol, well she was entangled in plastic … I showed them how the oceans are connected and how drifted all the way until I washed up on a Devon beach. Shell was lucky and being looked after. I told stories of mermaids, and how fish are my friends, so when asked (what I ate was the most popular question!) of course Shell the mermaid doesn’t eat them! There’s no need, with the ambulance of plants in the oceans.

mermaid-2It was a fun way to spend a half term. Though it was a lot of time sat on a rock!

How was I a PALL mermaid you may wonder ….

  • The outfit was another mermaids who lived there
  • The hair, no it’s not mine! I got second-hand on ebay
  • The make up I borrowed from my house mate
  • The jewellery I picked up at charity shops

Even a mermaid can be PALL!

Perhaps Shell the Mermaid with a Message sowed a seed or two … Many parents hadn’t heard of plastic in the oceans, and many had no idea how big the pacific is.

I hope some came away with a little more knowledge of our oceans, as well as a selfie with a real mermaid! 

mermaid-4mermaid-3Remember, every refusal adds up. 



Cuppa tea, in a real cup!

I’ve yet, and can’t imagine ever being one for running about the streets with a cuppa tea. But I do like to sit in a have one, and when I do, I like a real cup!

Not just because of plastic pollution, but because drinking out of a ‘paper’ cup sipping through a plastic lid, reminds me of, well … kids parties!

This visit to a small cafe I’d luckily just popped in a charity shop and picked up this cool mug, otherwise it was only disposables. They offered a discount if you BYO (bring your own) but didn’t supply any? What would I have done having not gone to the charity shop? I would have gone somewhere else. There’s always somewhere else, and there’s always real cups to be found. 

For take away though, it was great they offer a discount if you BYO cup  

Plastic pollution from coffee cups is through the roof. You only have to be up and about in a busy place early in the morning to see it in full force, everyone is walking about with a cup, and where do they go? Landfill hopefully … The cups are lined with plastic – hence they don’t leak – and the lids are often not the right colour for recycling. Or the right number. Or go in the right bin! There’s a lot of factors to consider …

So remember to bring your own cup. If they don’t offer a discount, ask for one! Or better still, why not sit in and enjoy a five-minute break and a cuppa tea, in a real cup!

cups4Remember, every refusal adds up! 

‘A Plastic Ocean’ screens to over 600 people in Bristol.

In 2009 I saw the starting of a documentary on plastic pollution. Fast forward nine years and I arranged not one, but two screenings to an audience of over 600 people of that very film, ‘A Plastic Ocean’.

Since moving to Bristol I’m honoured to have become friends with Jo Ruxton, the amazing and dedicated films producer. Jo’s work on Blue Planet One led her to create this, to show the world what’s happening to our beautiful and vital ocean. Jo was in the house and held a Q&A after the screenings. She spoke warmly of her passion behind the film, “If you count the time I’ve spent making this film in Grandchildren, I’ve had four.” 

This clip from Sir David Attenborough is a must watch … 

For this event I arranged a bar and prize draw, with proceeds going to Plastic Oceans UK and City to Sea. We had so many generous prizes, ranging from items to help people live plastic free, and awesome days out to get people outside.  A huge team of people came forward  to volunteer. I was touched with people’s generosity and willingness to help. People really do want a world free of plastic pollution, and are willing to put themselves out to achieve it. Including Bristol Aquerium, who kindly gave us the space, staff and support free of charge both evenings.

I’m not sure I’ve met anyone though, who has worked as tirelessly as Jo has this last decade to achieve this. Her film has won dozen of awards, she deserves a medel!

‘A Plastic Ocean’ is on Netflix and iTunes. I urge you to watch it, and perhaps even arrange a screening yourself … It’s not all easy viewing, but Jo was sure to finish the film  on solutions we can all do to prevent our oceans becoming A Plastic Ocean. YOu can see the trailer here:

Remember, every refusal adds up, together, we can create #AWaveofChange.