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Tuesday September 19, 2017 - Email this article to a friend

The annual hike to clean up the largest glacier in France, Chamonix's Mer de Glace, has taken place.



The volunteer cleaners collected rubbish discarded by some 500,000 visitors as well as decades-old waste uncovered as the ice of the famous glacier in the Vallée Blanche melts.

It's the 10th year of the Mer de Glace (Sea of Ice) clean-up event which aims to raise awareness of the need to protect the glacier and our environment as a whole.

The British Consulate and Crystal Ski Holidays joined forces with the town of Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, the French Alpine Club Lafuma, other mountain-based organisations and a large number of volunteers for Operation "Montagne Responsable".

This year they were also joined by two Crystal Ski Holiday competition winners who specialise in the geography of cold environments and won their place on the trip along with a two night stay.

Mer de Glace clean-upMer de Glace cleaning crew
















Mer de Glace clean-upMer de Glace clean-up
















To mark the 10th anniversary, an eco-friendly village, exhibition and workshops were open to the public to raise awareness and share best practice.

Participants and locals were entertained at the Maison des Artistes by a group of musicians who also joined in the clear-up.

"This is now the third year that Crystal has been involved in the clean-up as for us, sustainable tourism is fundamental," said Catherine Allen, Crystal Office Operations Manager France.

"Over the last ten years, over 20 tonnes of waste was collected from the glacier including a truck tyre and a Swiss passport dated 1964 - certainly one of the more unusual finds".

Mer de Glace clean-upMer de Glace rubbish




















The British Ambassador to France, Lord Ed Llewellyn, said: "I am delighted to see staff at our Consulate in Marseille once again working closely with Crystal Ski Holidays and other partners, not forgetting the French authorities, to raise awareness of the importance of protecting our environment."

"This is another excellent example of continued collaboration and cooperation with our Voisins in France."

Les Voisins (The Neighbours) is a British Embassy campaign launched in Paris by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in March this year.

It was established to celebrate the ties that bind Britain and France.

Mer de Glace clean-upMer de Glace clean-up
















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