Independent retailers in the East London suburb of Bexley are hoping for a revenue boost after signing up to a pioneering recycling incentive scheme which offers residents discounts in local shops.

The London Borough of Bexley is the first council to sign up to the London Green Points scheme, which has been rolled out to thousands of households in Thamesmead on the London and Kent border. All participating households will receive a discount card to be used in participating retailers, who each decide on their individual offers.

More than 30 local shops have signed up, including Belvedere News, which is offering 10% off all grocery purchases above £10.

Belvedere News owner Amit Patel said: "I really hope that this increases footfall into the store. It's not costing me a penny, and it's free advertising, therefore I have nothing to lose."

Graham Simmonds, co-founder of London Green Points, said the scheme was aimed at local retailers and cafés rather than multiples. He said the scheme was about raising awareness of both recycling and the local high street. Retailers can amend their offer on a monthly basis, he added.

The scheme, which has been endorsed by London mayor Boris Johnson, will be extended to 15,000 households by next spring. If successful, it will be rolled out across the borough. A number of other London councils are understood to be in discussions about adopting the scheme.

Under the initiative, residents will also receive green points which can be redeemed on products on the website or donated to local charities. The amount of green points are based on the total recycling and waste saved in the neighbourhood.

All participating retailers are featured on the website,

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