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Cafes and restaurants set up free water refill stations to cut down on plastic waste

PUBLISHED: 15:01 13 October 2018 | UPDATED: 15:03 13 October 2018

The Refill King's Lynn launch at the Saturday Market Place Farmers Market. Picture Erna Gotyar

The Refill King's Lynn launch at the Saturday Market Place Farmers Market. Picture Erna Gotyar

Erna Gotyar

More than a dozen cafes and restaurants in King’s Lynn have joined the Refill campaign in a bid to cut plastic waste.

The Refill King's Lynn launch at the Saturday Market Place Farmers Market. Picture Erna GotyarThe Refill King's Lynn launch at the Saturday Market Place Farmers Market. Picture Erna Gotyar

Refill is a national tap water campaign which encourages businesses to set up stations for the public to get their water bottles refilled for free.

So far, around 16 businesses in King’s Lynn have joined the campaign, with the easily identifiable Refill sticker placed on their shop fronts to alert passers-by to fill up their bottles.

The project was launched in the town by volunteer Erna Gotyar, who had also arranged a beach clean in Heacham last month.

At the beach clean, which took place on September 15 as part of the Great British Beach Clean, Miss Gotyar spoke of her shock after a volunteer found a 25-year-old crisp packet.

At the Refill King’s Lynn launch today at the Saturday Market Place Farmers Market, Miss Gotyar said concerns about plastic waste was felt by many in the town.

“It’s been really busy, so many people have visited,” she said. “Most people are really happy to see this happening in King’s Lynn.

“King’s Lynn is surrounded by stunning landscapes and beaches. The Wash and North Norfolk coast is one of the most important marine areas in the UK and European North Sea.

“Plastics, including single-use plastic bottles, are now the most frequently found type of litter on UK beaches and you don’t have to look far to find them littering our towns and green spaces too.”

Five sustainable water bottles from Anglian Water were given away in a raffle at the launch, with the first winner being West Norfolk Mayor Nick Daubney.

Organisations that have jumped on board the campaign include Costa at the Vancouver Quarter, Customs House, Christina’s Cafe, Marriott’s, The Globe Hotel, The Pretty Little Teashop, Bank House Hotel, Golding’s, The Cafe at The Walks, Alive Corn Exchange and K’s Market.

The average adult buys more than three plastic water bottles every week - a startling 175 bottles every year per person.

In total, some 7.7b plastic bottles are bought across the UK each year, resulting in substantial amounts of plastic waste.

To join the Refill King’s Lynn campaign, email Erna Gotyar on refillkingslynn@hotmail.com. For more information and to find your nearest Refill station, visit: refill.org.uk.

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