UK rail stations to get free drinking water fountains

Railway stations across the UK will soon have free drinking water stations as part of an initiative to reduce the use of plastic waste and encourage riders to refill their own water bottles.

Network Rail, which owns and operates the UK’s railway infrastructure, is launching a free drinking water initiative that will see water fountains installed at some of the country’s largest railway stations.

The new facilities, which will provide free drinking water on the go for the millions of people who use Network Rail’s managed stations, forms part of the public agency’s “wider ambitions to reduce the impact of plastic waste at its stations”.

The free drinking water initiative will begin with the trial installation of a new water fountain at London’s Charing Cross station by the end of March. A full rollout of free drinking water facilities across all Network Rail managed stations will follow later in the year.

These include some of Britain’s biggest and busiest stations, such Euston, King’s Cross, Paddington and Waterloo stations in London, as well as Waverley station in Edinburgh, Glasgow Central and Manchester Piccadilly.

“By introducing free water fountains at our managed stations we can make a simple change that not only helps quench the thirst of station users, but also has a positive impact on our sustainability ambitions by reducing single-use plastics,” said David Biggs, Network Rail’s managing director of property.

Last month London’s mayor Sadiq Khan announced a new initiative to install drinking fountains and bottle-refill points across the city in an effort to cut down on plastic waste.

Image credit: Network Rail

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