A COASTAL litter pick in Purbeck discovered hundreds of kilograms of waste including three plastic drums full of oil, fish netting and rope.

Volunteers carried out the extensive effort along the beach near Lulworth Cove.

The team of 15 people met up over the weekend to tackle the alarming amount of rubbish that had washed up at Worbarrow Bay after recent storms.

Steve Trewhella found the three drums filled to the brim with oil that he suspected had been dumped at sea.

He said: “If this drum had spilled open in the sea, or even on the beach, it would have caused absolute devastation.

“This is how the shipping and fishing industries treat the sea they actually rely on.

“A lot of people say that most plastic in the sea is what they call land-sourced, but I don’t buy into that.

“The vast majority of litter that we find is from the shipping and fishing industries that has been dumped at sea.

“This is a global problem that won’t go away but how do you police it? How do you stop these industries from doing what is essentially fly tipping at sea?

“People think they are making a difference. They have this idea that if they don’t use a plastic straw they have somehow saved the planet. A straw won’t make a difference as long as litter is being dumped at sea in these quantities.

The waste collected from the beach was loaded onto a truck for removal.

Mr Trewhella said he regularly finds large quantities of rubbish at Worbarrow Bay and Chesil Beach.

“This is supposed to be a World Heritage site. Everyone comes to Dorset in the summer thinking it’s some kind of pristine land but the people who live here know what it’s really like.

“The scary thing is that was all from one beach and what we are seeing wash up on our beaches is just a fraction of what is being dumped in the ocean.

“It’s a terrifying situation that we have become immune to.”