The company's two-minute animation provides a fun and timely twist on an iconic narrative, warning viewers of exactly what might happen if they don’t remember to avoid pouring fat, oil and grease (FOG) and plastic products down their drains this Christmas - but also reminding them that it’s never too late to change their bad habits.
Legendary miser, Ebenezer Scrooge, becomes Ebenezer Sewage, a rich and odious man who doesn’t care what gets poured down his sink and toilet as he indulges himself with fatty, greasy Christmas dinners year after year.
Anyone who challenges him on his behaviour is met with the same response - “bah, fatberg!” - until one fateful Christmas Eve, in which he is confronted with a vision of what the drains of Christmas future could look like if people like him fail to change their behaviour and dispose of their household waste more responsibly:
- Giant fatbergs blocking up the nation’s sewers and drains
- Household flooding due to clogged pipes ruining family Christmases
- Endless sewer repairs and roadworks stopping people getting home in time for Christmas
- Rivers overflowing with waste and marine life dying due to plastic pollution
Anyone familiar with “A Christmas Carol” will know how this brings about a major change of heart for Ebenezer, and Lanes Group is hoping that people across the country will take inspiration from this famous tale of redemption by making changes to the way they dispose of waste this Christmas.
The launch of “The Drains of Christmas Future” comes hot on the heels of Lanes’ groundbreaking Unblocktober campaign, which saw more than 4,500 Brits come together to reduce the amount of troublesome substances and materials being put down their drains by taking part in a month-long challenge.
Backed by the UK’s leading utilities companies, as well as organisations such as Defra, Keep Britain Tidy, the Marine Conservation Society and Surfers Against Sewage, the Love Water-backed campaign helped to educate people on the dangers of putting FOG, wet wipes, food waste and hidden plastics down the drains.
What’s more, a survey of participants showed that 78% were very optimistic about being able to maintain their new habits - the kind of behavioural change befitting Ebenezer Sewage himself!
Michelle Ringland, Head of Marketing at Lanes Group, said: “One of the best things about Christmas is that it’s a time of excess, with homes across the country stocking up on all manner of fatty and greasy treats, even as we speak.
“However, it’s vital to make sure that our annual festivities do not come at the expense of our sewers and seas - and that’s exactly what is happening when people thoughtlessly pour FOG, food scraps and plastic-based waste down their drains, leading to dangerous blockages and environmental damage on a major scale.
“In our version of ‘A Christmas Carol’, it takes a grim premonition of the future to convince Ebenezer Sewage of the need to change his ways, and sadly this vision isn’t unrealistic; it’s happening right now, and will continue on a larger and larger scale unless we take action to sort it out. Fortunately, the recent success of Unblocktober has shown that the British public is much more willing than Ebenezer to proactively embrace better habits and do their bit to keep the country’s drains clean and clear.
“Here’s hoping that revellers across the country continue to maintain the spirit of Unblocktober throughout the festive period - and ensure that our shared vision for the real drains of Christmas future can be a bright one!”
Watch the Drains of Christmas Future here.