Nottingham Rowing Club bans single-use plastic bottles

Nottingham Rowing Club has banned the use of single-use water bottles and provided members with their own reusable plastic bottle to reduce the club’s plastic footprint


Nottingham rowers with their new plastic bottles

After seeing plastic debris strewn across part of the Peruvian Andes over the summer, the problem of plastic was really brought home to Tony Lorrimer, President of Nottingham Rowing Club. So when he later came across 20 plastic bottles left abandoned around the rowing club, he immediately banned the use of single use bottles.

To encourage the ban, he has given a plastic water bottle in club colours to every member who signs a pledge not to use single-use bottles again. Each bottle is free of charge after Lorrimer personally donated the sum to the club.

The plastic bottles can be used for a number of years and has the member’s name written on it. So, if they’re left lying around, Lorrimer knows who the culprit is.

Back in July, Lorrimer was holidaying in Peru and was horrified by the sight of all the plastic rubbish.

“We drove over the Andes at 4,500m above sea level – the stunning scenery was wrecked by all the plastic debris in the fields along the road. It must have gone back 400 metres from the road and went on for miles. The road was not very busy. Goodness knows where it all comes from?

I think the ban is a great idea, it’s good for the environment and makes our gym a much tidier place

“As my old mentor at Leicester Rowing Club told me back in the Sixties: ‘Don’t moan about something unless you are prepared to do something about it.’”

The multi-use plastic bottles have been well received by the membership and is encouraging them to think twice about other single-use plastic items.

Club member Annie Campbell-Orde said: “I think the ban is a great idea, it’s good for the environment and makes our gym a much tidier place.

“These ideas usually make little difference, but with Tony’s generous donation of the lovely Nottingham multi-use bottles it has actually made a very positive change.”

Lorrimer added: “The planet will see me out but what about my kids and grandkids? It has made the members sit up and think.

“An effect I was not expecting was for the gym to be tidier, but the members really like the bottles and therefore take possession of them. A journey of 1,000 miles starts with a single step.”