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We're going green!

Just like the Wicked Witch of the West in the land of Oz, we’re being green!

Theatre Royal Winchester is a large building that needs lighting and heating every day so, to help reduce the environmental (and financial) costs, matters are overseen and monitored by our brilliant, environmentally-conscious Site Manager, Desmond Webb.

Already he has implemented:

  • The installation of LED lighting in corridors, stairwells and offices with PIR (passive infrared) detection technology. LEDs use less electricity and infrared technology means our lights only go on when they pick up movement – also meaning less electricity. Our emergency (halogen) lighting has also been replaced with LED lighting.
  • The installation of flush controls on the toilets to reduce the amount of water used; while the push taps over the sinks only run for a few seconds – also saving water. Desmond hopes one day the taps can be upgraded with PIR technology.
  • An upgrade of the building’s systems to improve control of the heating and ventilation.
  • A descaling of the gas boilers to increase their lifespan and improve efficiency.

What else are we doing as a theatre?

  • Our theatre’s Christmas tree decorations are reused each year.
  • Our Front of House team are dedicated to offering ‘greener’ merchandise at shows, particularly for pantomime!
  • We ask our acts and touring theatre companies to bring with them reusable water bottles to refill with tap water – otherwise our single-use water bottle allocation would be through our (theatre) roof!

Our Cafe Bar stocks a wide range of local products to reduce the need for delivery, which causes pollution – including:

  • A number of ales from Redcat Brewing based in Winnall, in Winchester.
  • The ice-cream is made by carbon negative Jude’s, in Twyford, Winchester – meaning the company removes more CO2 emissions from the atmosphere than it emits. Its packaging and wooden spoon are recyclable, biodegradable too; plus, two of the flavours stocked are vegan – bringing more dairy free lines to the Cafe Bar.
  • A range of artisan gins come from the Bombay Sapphire Distillery at Laverstock Mill, Hampshire, The Isle of Wight Distillery and Winchester Distillery, in Alresford, Winchester (who also supply a vodka).
  • The coffee comes from Origin Coffee and while not a local supplier, it is a certified B corporation, meaning it addresses social and environmental problems elsewhere. Their small batch coffee is directly sourced from farmers, ensuring fair pay for the farming communities involved and environmentally and socially sustainable farming and processing.


The Cafe Bar team – managed by an extremely passionate Amarinda Gurr – are always looking to improve their reusable and recyclable serving options too – with the recycling company they use, one of a few that recycles the majority of recyclable waste it collects. Even the single-use coffee cups by breaking apart the plastic liner from the cardboard outer!

What is reusable and/or recyclable?

  • Customers can opt to have their hot drink in a durable, reusable Huskee cup. These are made from the largest waste by-product in the coffee-making process, coffee husks – making their production more sustainable.
  • Cold drinks are served in reusable cups made from a highly durable polycarbonate that can withstand up to 500 washes before needing to be disposed of. Glass is not allowed in the auditorium so these allow audiences to take their drink in to enjoy during a show.
  • Our takeaway packaging (cups, lids and boxes), cutlery (wooden) and straws (paper) are all compostable.
  • Other drinks for sale come in recyclable aluminium cans or glass bottles.
  • The Candy Kitten sweets on sale come in fully recyclable packaging and champion vegan and sustainable ingredients with a less harmful impact on the planet than gelatin or palm oil.
  • Microfibre cloths and glass cloths for cleaning are also used, washed on site and reused – in a move away from single use cleaning products.

Anything else?

  • Plant-based milks are available free of charge.
  • Electrical appliances are switched off when they not in use.