Thousands of Southwark residents spent the day visiting a waste management facility to mark Wonder Day on September 22, writes Selina Helal…
Veolia kicked off Recycle Week, running from 24-30 September, by giving Wonder Day visitors special ‘behind the scenes’ access to the most advanced recycling facilities in Europe – Southwark Integrated Waste Management Facility.
After the tour, a staggering 95% of people said that packaging should be made more sustainable.
Beccy Allen, from Nunhead, said: “What a great way to learn about the small changes we can all make to create a big difference.”
Veolia, supplying 100 million people with drinking water in 2015, has given over 800 tours of the Southwark Integrated Waste Facility.
The popular ‘ask the expert’ section offered visitors the opportunity to question the Veolia industry experts about recycling, how waste can be used as a resource, how manufacturers are working to rethink and redesign packaging. The experts also cleared up any misinformation by advising what can and can’t be recycled.
Fabrice Bouchon, General Manager for Veolia Southwark, said: “It has been an incredible day, this event is now in its seventh year and I believe it’s been the best so far. The children loved the upcycling workshops, the Junk Orchestra, and Urban Smoothie Bikes and many people have told us how interesting and thought provoking the site tour was.
He added: “I am very proud of the staff that took part and it was a pleasure to see so many people enthused by waste and recycling.”
Recycling enthusiasts experienced a variety of attractions, including a display of Veolia collection vehicles and JCBs, a falconry display and the interactive Recycling Discovery Centre that welcomed people of all ages to learn about the lifecycle and origin of materials. Visitors were also tested with a recycling quiz for a chance to win prizes.
The day ended on a sweet note with treats from Old Kent Road Honey helping to raise over £250 for FoodCycle.
Councillor Richard Livingstone, Cabinet Member for Environment and Public Realm, said: “Wonder Day really is fabulous fun for the whole family and a great opportunity to learn how the facility has helped Southwark have the lowest level of waste that ends up as landfill of any inner London council.”