London Marathon Events partners with SATCol to repurpose discarded clothing

Marathon organiser will work with the Salvation Army Trading Company to  reuse and recycle garments from series of events this year, including this weekend’s London Marathon

Starting line of London Marathon where clothing discarded by runners before the race will be collected by the Salvation Army Trading CompanyIn a push towards greater environmental sustainability, London Marathon Events (LME) has partnered with the Salvation Army Trading Company, the commercial arm of The Salvation Army to tackle the issue of discarded clothing at various major events, starting with this year's marathon season.

The partnership involves Salvation Army volunteers stationed at the start lines of LME's key events, including the London Marathon, who will collect clothes that participants shed before starting their races. These items will be transported to a processing centre in the East Midlands, where they will be sorted for resale, reuse, or recycling.

Kate Chapman, Head of Sustainability at LME, highlighted the environmental goals of this initiative, stating: “We are fully committed to reducing our environmental impact and we’re working to introduce more initiatives every year to achieve this. Depending on the weather conditions, on some occasions many thousands of participants in our events will discard clothing as they move towards the Start line.

“Our new partnership with The Salvation Army means this clothing will be collected, sorted, sent for resale and reuse, or – if no longer in a condition to be reused, reprocessed through their innovative 'Fibersort' technology which creates more opportunities for garments to be repurposed and diverted from landfill or incineration.”

Richard Shea, Service Development Manager at Salvation Army Trading Company Ltd commented: “We're delighted to work alongside London Marathon Events, aligning our shared commitment to supporting the environment by utilising our textile innovations to repurpose unwanted clothing across a number of events this year.”

The clothing collection initiative will be active at the following 2024 events:
- TCS London Marathon on 21 April
- Ford RideLondon on 26 May
- The Big Half on 1 September
- The Vitality London 10,000 on 22 September
- The Royal Parks Half on 13 October

This scheme is part of a broader strategy by LME to enhance the sustainability of its events, aiming to reduce carbon emissions and improve waste management and resource circularity.

For more details on sustainability efforts at this year’s London Marathon, visit their official website.

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