Shrewsbury’s ground-breaking deposit coffee cup scheme has already led to a 50% reduction in single-use plastic cups being used in participating cafes – and more retailers are joining the scheme, including Marks & Spencer.

Organisers behind the Shrewsbury Cup, which is supported by Shrewsbury BID and the Morris Group, say they are delighted that the national retailer, which runs a busy coffee shop in its Castle Street store, has agreed to join the campaign. 

The scheme works by customers paying a £1 deposit to use a Shrewsbury Cup instead of a disposable cup – they can then return the cup and reclaim their deposit, and the cup is washed and used again. 

Independent cafes, including Ginger & Co, stop coffee shop, The Shed and Shrewsbury Coffee House, have reported a positive response since the cup was launched at the start of April. 

Some have seen a reduction of more than 50% in the use of single-use plastic takeaway cups. 

Alison Thomas, of the Shrewsbury Cup CIC (community interest company), said the campaign had been a great success so far. 

“We have been really pleased with the take-up, both from businesses and their customers,” she said. 

“About 150,000 single-use cups are thrown away every year in Shrewsbury, and we want to cut that number drastically. 

“More cafes are contacting us about getting involved, and it’s fantastic that the Marks and Spencer coffee shop has joined the scheme. 

“Our aim is to get as many cafes in Shrewsbury as possible using reusable cups – let’s make Shrewsbury a beacon for other towns to follow.” 

Rachel Williams, Store Manager at M&S Shrewsbury said: “The Shrewsbury Cup is a fantastic community initiative that we are excited to be a part of. 

“We’re looking forward to welcoming locals into store where they can pick up their own Shrewsbury Cup.” 

For more information, visit the website at www.shrewsburycup.co.uk