SURREY Straw Switch took off in Woking town centre as local outlets serving cold drinks to sip or slurp raised their glasses to a plastic straw free future.

The Woking-based company Paper Straw Group gave away around 6,000 paper straws as part of an initiative backed by the local council and Surrey County Council to be the first plastic straw free county.

Having set up a station for the event at Café Rouge in Victoria Square, Natalie Stephens, managing director of the Paper Straw Group, and her team gave away packs of their bespoke paper straws to businesses that currently offer straws to their customers, including Patches of Horsell, the New Victoria Theatre and Café Rouge itself.

“We would really like to make Surrey the first county that has no plastic straws and then would be more than happy to take that nationwide,” said Natalie. “It’s been wonderful to see the support this has."

In addition to Woking Mayor Cllr Will Forster and a number of other local councillors visiting the launch, councillors from Epsom and Ewell also visited as one of the districts that is looking at holding a similar launch.

The straws are being made in Woking with UK materials, including vegetarian-friendly ink, on bespoke machinery. This includes 100% plastic-free glue, which is one of the factors that the company has said makes it stand out from other similar products.

For the full story get the 4 April edition of the News & Mail