Pioneers of recycling have Centre Court in their sights

Those furry pin-ups of the recycling movement, the Wombles, left their burrow on the nearby common to help promote the Big Recycle at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships.

Uncle Bulgaria and Madame Cholet extol the virtues of recycling at Wimbledon. Source: Tim Bishop

Uncle Bulgaria and Madame Cholet extol the virtues of recycling at Wimbledon. Source: Tim Bishop

Uncle Bulgaria and Madame Cholet mingled with visitors queuing to get into the tournament and reminded them to recycle their waste while there.

The Wombles were at the All England Club on Monday, June 27 to kick-start the national Big Recycle week which saw events taking place up and down the country.

The Wombles were trying to get across the message that while it may have been acceptable for everyday folk to leave things behind when they first graced our television screens in the 1970s, Wombling was now the mainstream and we should all be making sure our rubbish is put to good use where possible.

The rare appearance of the elusive creatures coincided with the release of Recycle for London's latest figures showing that Londoners still have room for improvement but are finding it easier than ever to recycle.

John Duffy, the Mayor's policy director on the environment, said: "Londoners currently only recycle 13% of their rubbish, but we are moving in the right direction.

"The good news is that people are now realising that it's getting easier and easier to recycle things they used to throw away.

"78% of people living across London now have a recycling collection service from their doorstep, a significant increase from 57 per cent three years ago.

"Everyone knows about paper and glass, but the Wombles are helping us get the message across that Recycle for London can help people recycle everything from shoes and clothes to take away containers and yellow pages here in the capital.

'We want to encourage people to think twice before throwing things in the bin at home, especially now that recycling is so easy.

  • 83 per cent of Londoners say it is now either very or fairly convenient to recycle their household waste, up from only 69 per cent six months previously.
  • Just under half of all Londoners (47 per cent) now say that they 'recycle a lot' compared to less than a third (31 per cent) when asked the same question previously.
  • The number of people who say that they do not recycle at all has dropped significantly from 17 per cent to only 9 per cent.

    By Sam Bond

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