The River Thames is one of the world’s most iconic rivers and a beloved feature in the Wandsworth district of Putney. It's home to runners, cyclists, dog walkers, offices and a thriving rowing community but with such high footfall (and water-fall?), it’s no surprise that litter ends up on the path, and the river.

After Blue Planet’s focus on ocean plastics last year, the seriousness of rubbish in our waters is still at the forefront of our minds, not least in Putney. This year 115,000 wet-wipes were pulled from the foreshore near Putney in one day. Very regular litter picks are what’s keeping the paths looking tidy, but prevention is better than cure, and is essential to saving our 125 species of fish in the Thames from getting litter in their gut.

Cue...For Fish’s Sake (#FFSLDN)! 

Following on from the successful pilot in 2017 where litter reduced by 32%, #FFSLDN is landing in Putney this summer to nudge people to stem the flow of litter into the river.

We’re back with us some old favourites such as fishy-themed floor art, a community gallery sharing the stories of people who live, play and work near the river, and voting bins asking some VERY topical questions (rugby, or football?).

We’re also trying some new things. We will raise awareness about what we call ‘tidy littering’– this is litter that isn’t deliberate, it might be squeezing rubbish into overflowing bins, leaving litter next to a bin, placing cups or bottles on ledges, or putting cigarette butts down drains.

With such an active rowing community in Putney this also attracts a lot of accidental litter, such as leaving bottles on the riverbank, snack packets blowing away, and all sorts of rubbish left behind by event spectators, so we’ll be working with the clubs to find some solutions to the problem.

Get involved

Along the river in Putney we’ll highlight the need to protect and cherish the Thames by asking everyone to:
  1. Use the bin - not the gutter, not the river, not the pavement
  2. If you see some litter and you’re near a bin – pick it up  
  3. If the bin is full, find another one or take your litter home. 

Why does it matter?

Our research found that 7 in 10 Londoners think the Thames is too polluted for fish to survive, but actually it’s home to 125 species of fish, as well as other wildlife such as seals, dolphins and even sea horses! 

This is a global issue because rivers, seas and oceans are all connected - 80% of ocean plastic comes from land-based sources. Litter in both the river and the ocean is being eaten by and harming birds, fish and other species.

For those who prefer pound signs to porpoises, the Thames is worth £40 billion to the UK economy and provides 140,000 jobs.

The campaign is a partnership project between Hubbub, the Port of London Authority, Wandsworth and Richmond Council, and Postively Putney BID.

Booking for this event has now closed.