International refuse on St Kilda

Litter from all over the world has been found washed up on the only beach on the islands of St Kilda.

A clean-up of Village Bay collected 520 pieces of rubbish including a Brazilian mustard container, Japanese washing up liquid bottle and Canadian oil drum.

National Trust for Scotland (NTS) staff filled 13 black bin bags from the 450m stretch of beach.

The rubbish will be shipped St Kilda to be recycled or disposed of on the Western Isles.

Sarah Money, NTS seabird and marine ranger, led a team of three for the clean-up.

Tangled seals

They found plastic drink bottles made up the bulk of the rubbish.

She said: “This shows that, despite being so remote, St Kilda is not immune to the problem of plastic marine debris pollution.

“We only have a tiny stretch of beach in a sheltered harbour, so with 520 pieces of rubbish collected it indicates the huge extent of the problem.

“In the last month we have seen two seals tangled up in discarded fishing net which we can do nothing about and this is extremely saddening and frustrating.”

St Kilda, 41 miles of the Western Isles, has dual World Heritage status from Unesco in recognition of the islands’ natural and cultural heritage.