A blitz on beach litter will take place this weekend with dozens of volunteers expected to visit Sussex beaches as part of Beachwatch 2001.

The annual clean-up, now in its ninth year, is the most extensive monitoring programme for coastal litter in Europe and thousands are expected to take to beaches across the UK tomorrow and on Sunday.

Volunteers are being asked to remove litter from their local beach and record each item they find.

Last year's event revealed plastic and polystyrene pieces to be the biggest problem, with rope, crisp and sweet packets and cigarette stubs also found in large quantities.

The Marine Conservation Society uses Beachwatch to understand and deal with beach litter.

East Sussex beaches being cleared on Sunday include Camber Sands, Rottingdean and St Dunstans.

Selsey beach in West Sussex will be tackled tomorrow and Pagham Harbour foreshore tomorrow and on Sunday. Cobnor Rithe and West beach, West Sussex, will be cleaned on Sunday.

Contact the Marine Conservation Society on 01989 566017 or email beachwatch@mcsuk.org