WRAP Recycle week and Transition Towns

Filed in Blog by on June 19, 2009 6 Comments
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Recycling old clothes at the textiles bank

Recycling old clothes at the textiles bank

As you’ll be aware by now, next week is WRAP’s Recycle week. With the theme ‘let’s waste less’; five bloggers and a host of celebrities are making pledges to reduce their waste and reuse, recycle and compost more. Over 500 people had pledged by last weekend!

If you watched our video at the beginning of the week you’ll remember that our monster pledge is to declutter our garage. No longer a case of hiring a skip and throwing our rubbish away, it willΒ  be an experiment to see how little we can put into the landfill once we have recycled as much as we can.

Now, being a bit of a control-freak type, and a woman who needs order in her life, I’ve been doing a little preliminary work this week. You see, I can manage ‘garage declutter’ as long as the house is tidy and clean. I cannot, however, do ‘garage declutter’ if I then have to step inside at the end of the day to a disorderly and dirty mess.

So I’ve been decluttering the house. Three rooms in particular have been spectacularly messy since the sun showed her face and the garden beckoned:Β  Little Miss Green’s bedroom, the office and my study.

After spending 2 hours in Little Miss green’s room transforming it into an eight year olds paradise, I moved into our office, which also houses my wardrobe. I set myself the task of halving the amount of clothes I have. I didn’t quite manage that, but between us, Little Miss Green and I created 4 large bags of stuff for the charity shop and textiles bank.

So there you are minding your own business at the textiles bank when a lovely, smiling lady comes up to you and asks ‘What are you taking the photo for?’ (Mr Green was taking the above pic at the time).

We told her about our zero waste challenge, about WRAP’s Recycle week and that we try and reduce, reuse, recycle as much as we can.

Her lovely smile grew into Cheshire cat proportions and she told us that she was involved with the Transition Town movement.

Now I’d come across this only 2 days before. I’d found their local website and was having a bit of a nose around. But to be honest, apart from thinking ‘oh that would be nice’ I’d quite forgotten about it.

For those of you who have never heard of a Transition Town, it’s a community of people who are seeking creative and effective solutions to the issues of climate change and peak oil. They support one another in cutting their carbon emissions and reducing their dependency on fossil fuels, so that if cheap energy comes to an end, they won’t be left wondering where their next meal is coming from.

A Transition Town is a positive, empowering movement to be involved with. It’s all about rebuilding communities and working together for a sustainable, self sufficient and exciting future.

We took her leflets of upcoming meetings and workshops and what a busy bunch of eco warriors they are. Over the next month alone, there is a garden festival, a guided relaxation workshop, a family cycling event, an alternative energy event, a no dig gardening workshop, workshops on making your own salves and ointments, instructions on making elderflower cordial and a recycling event. Phew!

The icing on the cake, however, comes in September, when members are invited to ‘A positive visioning’. Here, everyone is getting together to share their vision of how they would like the town to look in 2020, taking into account the effects of climate change and peak oil.

I would love to know if any of you are involved with your local Transition Town. And don’t forget to support the other bloggers who are getting ready for WRAP’s Recycle week:

Mrs A is getting her entire community on board with recycling.
Mark at Be More Eco is pledging to use leftovers every day and increase his recycling.
Brenda at The Green Familia is decluttering her wardrobes too and making creative reuse of her unwanted items.
Susana from A modern mother is pledging to reuse her carrier bags.

Pop over to their sites andΒ  give them a cheer for all that they are doing!


About the Author ()

I am a long time supporter of the Green and Sustainable lifestyle. After being caught in the Boscastle floods in 2004, our family begun a journey to respect and promote the importance of Earth's fragile ecosystem, that focussed on reducing waste. Inspired by the beauty and resourcefulness of this wonderful planet, I have published numerous magazine articles on green issues and the author of four books.

Comments (6)

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  1. John Costigane says:

    Hi Mrs Green,

    The garage de-clutter will be of value to others with similar situations. Doing it during Recycle Week will raise more interest. I posted details on SkyNews Forum, alongside Mrs A community scheme. We all can learn from the experiences and, hopefully, do the same. One positive locally is that they are now using the correct language. HWRC has been mentioned for the first with county wide locations. There are still defficiencies but at least the thinking has changed. More progress should be on the way, at last!

    Transition Towns are a worldwide phenomenon, like Zero Waste. There are strands of self-sufficiency, energy development, AD?, and the 3 R’s. Growing Your Own, a rising interest fits this with a an idea of local trading, and currency. Food transport is a cost which can be lowered. Local shopping also fits this and Zero Waste.

  2. Hi Mrs G – Isn’t it funny who you bump into at a recycling bin. The other day I popped out to take a photograph of the glass recycling bins for my blog, to show the location where the Tetra Pak one will be located. I saw a lady approaching with bottles and I asked if she’d mind being in the picture.

    She turned around and said “are you Karen?”. I did my eyebrow raising thing and said “yeee…ee..s?” and it turned out that she’d read the article I’d written for our local magazine and was looking forward to Recycle Week with interest.

    She then got camera-shy and asked if she could take a photo of me at the recycling bin instead, so the one on my blog revealing the pledge is the photo that she took of me recycling her glass bottles. LOL.

    I’m not beginning to think, that the best way to meet like-minded folk in your area is to pitch up with some Pimms and Lemonade and make yourself comfy by the recycling bins. Hmm now that’s an idea for next week. πŸ˜€

  3. Compostwoman says:

    I am involved withTT Ledbury, which includes a lovely lady called Ruth, who is also involved with TT Newent….

    unfortunately you have just missed The Garden Festival at Hellens….it was last weekend…see my last post for details…

    next year, perhaps? It is a really good weekend event.

  4. brenda says:

    Well done Mrs G for making a start from inside the house, will be reading with bated breath, wished I lived nearer to you to give you a helping hand.

  5. Mrs Green says:

    @John Costigane: Hi John, thank you for spreading the word about Recycle week; I think it’s going to be a great success with over 500 pledges from the first weekend alone. I can’t wait to see how many people are involved now – there are over 2000 fans on their facebook page, so it looks really popular πŸ™‚

    @Almost Mrs Average: I love your idea of pimms by the recycling banks Mrs A – and how fab to be recognised; we had that in our local garden centre when we refused a bag LOL! We said ‘we don’t take bags any more, we’re reducing our waste’ Which led to wide -eyed; “Oh you’re the zero waste family who were in the paper ….” and thus a great conversation took place πŸ™‚

    @Compostwoman: I’ll have a look out for the weekend next year, Compostwoman – thanks. Perhaps you should give me a nudge a couple of weeks in advance πŸ˜‰

    @brenda: I wish you lived closer too Brenda – that would be fab! perhaps I’ll draw some kids in from the village to earn some pocket money LOL!

  6. Compostwoman says:

    I just sort of assumed you would know about The Garden Festival, ……..sorry!

    I will warn you next year in good time πŸ™‚

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