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New metal box installed in Valentines park, Ilford to dispense water

PUBLISHED: 10:14 12 September 2018

Councillor Jas Athwal at the unveiling of the new water fountain in Valentines Park. Picture: Redbridge Council

Councillor Jas Athwal at the unveiling of the new water fountain in Valentines Park. Picture: Redbridge Council

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Stop! Do not stub out your cigarettes out in it - the new metal box in Valentines Park is actually a water fountain.

Redbridge Council has installed a free water refill point in Cranbrook Road, Ilford in its bid to cut down on plastic waste and make it easier for residents to stay hydrated.

The council and its Leisure and Culture partner Vision has partnered with the Mayor of London and the #OneLess Drinking Foundation Fund for the new facility.

Leader of the Council, Councillor Jas Athwal said Fountains are making a comeback in Redbridge.

“As part of being a greener borough and a better place to live, we are committed to bringing water fountains and bottle refill points into operation across our borough,” he said.

“Providing simple ways of refilling and accessing free water not only cuts down on plastic bottle usage but helps people stay healthy and hydrated.I hope will be a popular addition to Valentines Park.”

The installation is one of 20 water dispensers being piloted across London and part of an initiative by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan to cut plastic waste.

“Water fountains are a simple but effective way to encourage Londoners and visitors to ditch plastic bottles and instead refill reusable ones,” said Mr Khan.

“I’m pleased to confirm the locations for the first 20 of our new public water fountains -Some of these are already attracting thousands of visitors a day and City Hall is working to secure many more across London.”

The Mayor has worked with the zoological Society of London’s(ZSL) #OneLess campaign to secure the locations of the fountains. ZSL assessed the site applications on accessibility, visibility and footfall to ensure water refills are available for as many Londoners as possible.

The mayor partnered with MIW Water Cooler Experts on a London Drinking Fountain Fund to provide up to £85,000 to finance the installations.

Dr Heather Koldewey, co-director of the #OneLess campaign and head of marine and freshwater at ZSL said: “This new public fountain will make it easier for visitors to the park to keep hydrated on the go without using single-use plastic water bottles, which could end up in the River Thames or our ocean.

“We are delighted to be working with Redbridge Council on this exciting initiative to reduce the plastic blight on the ocean and firmly establish London as a city that no longer uses plastic bottled water.”

Visit: redbridge.gov.uk/leisure-sport-and-the-arts/parks/valentines-park/

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