Responsible Pubs Campaign

23 November 2017

Paddle for more than a few minutes on the Thames and you will notice plastic glasses and straws floating or stranded on the shoreline. These are mostly getting into the Thames from the many riverside pubs and bars in London. They are polluting the river and reducing its attractiveness as a place to relax and enjoy London.

The Thames is an extraordinary resource for Londoners; providing a place to enjoy nature and escape from the bustle of city life. Riverside pubs are some of London’s finest, and in many cases, historic pubs draw people from across the city and also many visitors to London.

However, when plastic items from these pubs end up in the riverways – the damage is not only to the aesthetic view.  Plastic pollution in the water causes significant harm to wildlife as the items break down into microplastics - and inevitably, the presence of these microplastics in the food stream, means it also eventually ends up in human stomachs too!  

Active360 is part of the team spearheading a campaign to change this; working with riverside pubs and bars to advise and support in the implementation of operational changes that will tackle the problem at its source, by reducing the use of the most problematic plastic items.  The aim is to establish a nationally recognised 'responsible pub scheme', to which both independent and chain retailers will wish to be associated. 

The campaign has already gained support from many influential individuals and organisations including; comedian Bill Bailey, Tideway, WaterTrek, TotalSUP, Plastic Ocean Festival, as well as industry catering consultants and pub owners.  The group already have 13 pubs interested in trialing early initiatives, and are currently pursuing discussions with Sadiq Khan and Fullers brewery.

Significant change will inevitably take time, especially considering pub landlords understandable desire to maintain customer service and quality.  However, with similar initiatives run by organisations such as the Sustainable Restaurant Association (, complimenting an increase in customer awareness of plastic pollution issues, it's an exciting time for change.

This is an ongoing campaign, still in its formative stages – therefore we would welcome any support from individuals and organisations interested in supporting the efforts.  If you can contribute in any way, or would like more information, please contact us via the website or using 


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