‘Pass it on’: new life for old stuff

Far too many of Somerset ’s unwanted clothes, from suits to socks, blouses to bras, are ending up in the refuse bin and heading off to landfill.

So throughout February, Somerset ’s biggest waste prevention campaign – Green Routine 2013 – is urging families with possessions they no longer want or need to “Pass it on”.SWP reuse TVs

The average home has around £4,000 worth of clothes, almost a third of which has not been worn for a year. UK-wide, these have a total cost of £30 billion.

Despite such hoarding, each year 350,000 tonnes of clothes worth £140 million go into landfill.

And plenty of bulky items, such as homeware and electricals, from fridges to furniture, are being recycled or thrown away when they have plenty more life in them.

SWP Textiles 03Reuse cuts waste so while all textiles and some bulky items, such as electrical goods, can be recycled, it is even better to “Pass it on” to extend their lives.

A great way to “Pass it on” is a charity donation to the shops on every high street or Somerset ’s network of reuse group charities that resell homeware at low prices to those on limited incomes.

To avoid costly, wasteful and polluting landfill, Green Routine advises a bit of planning about passing on possessions to benefit good causes and save money:

  • Check for rarely worn clothes – are they unloved, outgrown, needing a revamp or repair?
  • Make reuse easy: use a box or bag to sort unwanted items as you go, ready to donate later.
  • Use your local charity shops – have fun looking for a thrifty new outfit and other bargains.
  • Check out your local furniture reuse group for items to donate and if you can buy items.

Beyond February’s “Pass it on”, Green Routine 2013 is a year-long campaign with monthly themes – from food to clutter – to help us all cut waste and save money while having fun.

For “Pass it on” details, from reuse groups to a “find a charity shop” tool, and free Green Routine emails with top tips, check Somerset Waste Partnership’s website: www.somersetwaste.gov.uk.


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