Service stations are not the most exciting of places to hang out, but we all end up there now and then. The good thing is that now you can turn your visit into a productive experience.
From the 21st of June 2018, for the first time ever in the UK, you will be able to claim money off your service station snacks and drinks. All you have to do is put your empty plastic bottles and coffee cups in special ‘recycling reward’ machines. The machines will issue a 5p money-off voucher for each item deposited and are part of a new pilot campaign called #DriveDownLitter. This aims to encourage road users to dispose of their rubbish responsibly.
The machines will be rolled out at Maidstone Services in Kent, key stop-offs for holidaymakers and lorry drivers travelling to and from France and tourists visiting the Garden of England itself. So if you find yourself going thereabouts, make sure to bring all your litter with you!
Created by environmental charity Hubbub, it is hoped that if this six-month pilot is successful it will be rolled out across England’s 1,800 miles of motorways, which are currently being used by some motorists as dumping grounds for bottles, cups, fast food leftovers, newspapers, wet wipes and many other items.
Removing litter from motorways is estimated to cost £6m a year, with more than 200,000 sacks of refuse collected annually – that’s an average of 111 bags collected from each mile of motorway.
Wayne Moore, Highways England Service Delivery Manager, said: “Each year we collect around 200,000 bags of litter from the motorways across the country – around 500 a day. Litter isn’t just unsightly. It can block drains and harm wildlife. Picking it up puts road workers in harm’s way and is a distraction from other vital work they could be doing. So I’d urge road users to dispose of their litter responsibly.
“We are pleased to support this great campaign, which should help reduce litter on our roads. Litter is a particular issue close to service stations, which is why we are working closely with the service station owners and our partners on a number of initiatives to tackle litter.”