Refill Thurso

Thurso Community Trust

Our community in Thurso and Caithness mainly leads a rural lifestyle, people here are laid back and very traditional in their views and behaviours. The key employers in our area are related to energy industry, so many people work offshore. Farming is another major occupation here. A lot of people from all over UK come to retire to Thurso and to enjoy the natural beauty of this area. During the tourist season our demographics is massively changed as tourists from all over the world come to visit the most northerly town on the UK mainland, and to take the ferry over to the Orkney and Shetland.

Why preventing plastic pollution IS important to US?

Because of our low density of population, the problem of pollution here is sadly often overlooked, even by governmental bodies. For example, programmes for collecting food waste and, in many areas, garden waste do not cover our area. However, living in the place of exceptional natural beauty, we must be very mindful of every stray plastic bottle or coffee cup that pollutes our stunning beaches, sea, lochs and mountains.

With the seasonal influx of tourists, levels of consumption of single-use plastic tend to increase. It has to be said that the typical tourists that chooses the Scottish Highlands as their holiday destination, are respectful of local nature. Nevertheless, due to remoteness and scarce opportunities for shopping, they are forced to buy water and other products in disposable packaging, just because most often it is the only available option.

And that’s why it is especially important to develop the ethos of refilling and reusing and to build the infrastructure of zero-packaging and refill retail in our area.

Reduce, reuse, refill and repeat


We shall keep encouraging local hospitality businesses and other shops to sign up to the Refill App and provide at least tap water refills, and, where possible, will promote zero-packaging retail. We also house the Party Kit for everyone to rent out instead of using disposable tableware. Thurso CDT established a zero-waste refill shop, as a part of Socially Growing project, where our community members can buy food supplies, household chemicals, toiletries etc. using their own reusable packaging. Refill Thurso is one part of our work towards the Highland Community Waste Partnership #conscious consumption campaign.

Find out how you can get involved in refill in the highlands…

Getting involved is easy!

If you are a local business in the Thurso area, you can get involved in the Refill campaign! We would also encourage senior schoolchildren, college students and young graduates to participate in the campaign.

Get in touch with Oksana at the Thurso Community Trust who will help you get on board and provide you with all the materials you need to offer Refill to residents and visitors.