KAYAKERS armed with litter pickers pulled 30 kilos of rubbish from a river, including a car’s rear-view mirror, flip flops and cigarette lighters.

Nine volunteers paddled along the River Ouse from Barcombe Mills on Sunday for Hove-based outdoor activity company Hatt Adventures’ first annual clean up.

They also collected 58 plastic drinks bottles, cans and glass bottles, dozens of tennis balls, footballs, a dead goose and a dead fish.

They also found more “random” items such as industrial plastic tubing, a DVD case and a rear-view mirror.

The clean up was planned in collaboration with marine conservation charity Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) and British Canoeing as part of its nationwide Autumn Beach and River Clean campaign.

The River Ouse Clean Up is part of Hatt Adventures’ environmental pledge to minimise its impact on nature and its quest for plastic-free waters.

Fran Holder, office manager, said: “We use this stretch of the river almost every day in summer.

“It isn’t overwhelmingly polluted, but a lot of people use it when the weather is nice and leave rubbish behind. We have a pledge to leave places better off than how we found them.

“Some of the things we found were quite random, but I expect the tennis balls were from people walking their dogs.”

British Canoeing ambassador Clare Osborn spoke at the event about waste reduction and inspiring positive change.

The event comes as the Government is planning to introduce a deposit return scheme, a system where every plastic drinks bottle can be recycled.

Data collected from the River Ouse Clean Up will be shared with the Government.

Ben Hewitt, director of projects and campaigns at SAS, said: “The scale of this clean – the biggest autumn clean across the UK – will provide us with vital data to inform the Government’s decisions on a new deposit return scheme. We need a simple scheme that includes all bottles and cans.

“After our beach cleans we will be able to specifically show the range of bottles and cans ending up polluting our beaches and rivers.”