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Butts Out

By Hubbub UK


Giant cigarettes heaped in piles on public streets raise awareness of cigarette litter, combined with provision of ‘Butts Out’ on-the-go ashtrays making it easy for smokers to dispose of their litter correctly.

Campaign Name: Butts Out
Delivered By: Hubbub UK
Main Objective: Behaviour change, raising awareness/ communications campaigns
Type: Stunt
Location: Urban
Cost: £1k – 2.5k


Giant cigarettes were heaped in piles on Villiers Street (The City of London, No Small Problem Campaign, 2014) and ‘Butts Out’ on-the-go ashtrays were given out to smokers.

Rationale: This tested the behaviour change theory that if you ‘make it easy’ for someone to engage in the desired behaviour, they are more likely to do it. Giving people who smoke portable on-the-go bins makes it easier for them to dispose of their waste responsibly. Butts Out was done in tandem with ‘Chalking the Talk’ (2.6) and the giant cigarettes in order to highlight the scale of the problem whilst providing a solution.

Public Participation: 2000 Butts Outs containers given out to people who smoke and regularly pass through Villiers Street over six sessions. Three local pubs and bars agreed to each stock 200 containers, all of which were given out to local smokers.

Headline Finding

The behavioural observations found that cigarette butt littering decreased by 8% from before to during the campaign. September was the month when cigarette littering behaviour was the lowest, achieving an 18% reduction compared to baseline. This corresponds to the month when cigarette litter prevention activities took place at Villiers Street


One off stunts tend to work better if combination to campaigns that run for a longer period of time. Consider how smokers may not like to be approached while smoking. Thus, installations and/or hand-outs may work better than stunts that actively engage smokers.

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