NEXT weekend more than 30 communities living along the Tweed and its tributaries are set for the biggest clean up ever held in the Borders.

Throughout Saturday and Sunday, February 29 and March 1, around 500 eco-conscious volunteers will be rolling up their sleeves for the second Great Borders River Clean.

The inaugural event in October attracted 304 rubbish collectors who bagged an incredible 1.85 tonnes of discarded wrappers, bottles and other environmentally damaging items.

And with more and more communities signed up it is expected even more rubbish will be collected next weekend.

St Mary's School teacher Tom Rawson is the brains behind the Great Borders River Clean.

He told us: "I have been blown away by the response to this event.

"There is something about rolling up your sleeves and getting stuck in to solve a common problem that has captured peoples' imaginations.

"It's easy to see plastic pollution as never-ending but it can be solved if enough people see the effects and are willing to do something about it.

"This is something that young people, in particular, understand.

"I have been delighted to see schools, Scout groups, sports teams and community groups across the Borders engaging with this event.

"This is something that has been actively encourage by St Mary's School in Melrose and I am fortunate to have time allocated to the organisation of this growing event."

Scottish Borders Council is supporting the event by funding litter grabbers.

And all rubbish collected will be transported to the region's waste transfer station.

As well as cleaning up the Tweed at Innerleithen it is also planned for a tidy-up of the mountain bike trails on Saturday.

Tom added: "I am keen to engage with anyone and everyone who enjoys being outside and who wants to help preserve and improve his or her natural environment.

"The Borders is a mountain biking paradise and so I am seeking to get that community actively involved with a joint river and trail clean at Innerleithen."

Newcastleton's clean has been moved forward to Friday, February 28. Volunteers are to meet near Whithaugh Pool at 2.30pm.

Saturday, February 29

Abbey St Bathans - 2pm at the Ford Car Park

Earlston – 10.30am at Earlston Square

Peebles – 10.30am at Kingsmeadow Car Park

Innerleithen – 10am at Traquair Road Bridge

Walkerburn – 2pm at Walkerburn Bridge

Lauder – 2pm at Burnmill Car Park

Newtown St. Boswells – 1.30pm at the Community Centre

Jedburgh – 1.30pm at Leisure Centre

Chirnside – 10am opposite the Community Centre

Sunday, March 1

Birgham – 10am at the Village Hall

St Boswells – 10am at Mertoun Bridge

Peebles – 10.30am at Kingsmeadow Car Park

Cardrona –11am at Nashy’s

Galashiels - 9.45am beneath Galafoot Bridge

Darnick/Tweedbank – 9.30am at Lowood Bridge Car Park

Melrose – 9.30am at Gattonside Chain Bridge

Kelso – 2pm at Café U

Coldstream – 10.30am at Coldstream Bridge

Berwick – 12noon at Lookout Café

Hawick – 11am at Common Haugh footbridge

Denholm – 1pm at Denholm School

Jedburgh – 1.30pm at Leisure Centre

Selkirk – 2pm at footpath by Oregon Timber/Carrs Billington