Single-use plastic bottles

The Mayor of London is working to improve access to free drinking water, helping to reduce the number of single-use plastic bottles in the capital.

The average London adult buys more than three plastic water bottles every week - a startling 175 bottles every year per person. In total, some 7.7 billion plastic bottles are bought across the UK each year, resulting in substantial amounts of single-use plastic waste. 

The Mayor is keen for Londoners to adopt small changes that can have a big environmental impact - like refilling reusable bottles with tap water, instead of needlessly buying new single-use ones. To support this, the Mayor is improving access to drinking water in public places and in London’s many restaurants, cafes and businesses, making it easier for Londoners and visitors to the capital to refill on the go.  

These projects and others will help with the Mayor’s ambition for London to send no biodegradable or recyclable waste to landfill by 2026 and put London back on track to recycling 65% of its waste by 2030. 

Drinking Water Fountains

The Mayor has partnered with Thames Water to provide a new £5 million fund to boost the number of drinking water fountains across London. The fountains will be installed from summer 2019 and will be located in busy and accessible London locations. We have invited London boroughs and public and private land owners to apply to host drinking water fountains. Read more.

London Drinking Fountain Fund
The Mayor, #OneLess, and MIW Water Cooler Experts have installed a network of drinking fountains and bottle refill stations across London. Installing these initial fountains will give us useful information which will influence the wider roll out of drinking fountains across London.

London Drinking Fountain Fund - locations
Kingly Court, off Carnaby Street (Westminster) Paddington Recreation Ground (Westminster)
Liverpool Street Station, near the Underground entrance Acton park - near the new skate park, (Ealing)
Liverpool Street Station, near Bishopsgate exit London School of Economics - outside library (Westminster)
Heart of Valentines Park (Redbridge) Guy's Hospital - entrance (Southwark)
The Broadway, Bexleyheath Town Centre (Bexley) St Thomas' Hospital - dining hall (Lambeth)
North Acton Station Square (Ealing) Nisbett Walk, Sidcup Town Centre (Bexley)
Windrush Square, Brixton (Lambeth) Natural History Museum (RB Kensington and Chelsea)
Ladywell fields (Lewisham)  Old Street Station (Islington)
Beckenham Place Park (Lewisham)  
Horniman Museum and Gardens (Lewisham)  

Refill London

Refill London encourages shops, businesses and cafes to offer members of the public free tap water refills.

Participating businesses display ‘refill’ stickers in their windows to let people know they offer free tap water and that there is no need to feel uncomfortable or embarrassed asking for it. They also appear on the Refill app, making the nearest Refill point easy to locate.

The Mayor has teamed up with City to Sea, Thames Water and Zoological Society of London’s #OneLess Campaign on the first phase of Refill London which will operate in five areas of London: 

  • Greenwich town centre
  • Lewisham High Street
  • The Southbank and Bankside
  • Regent St
  • London Bridge

Results from the first phase will be evaluated by ZSL's #OneLess campaign and their analysis will inform plans for a wider roll-out.

How you can help