Thatcham is awarded ‘Plastic Free Communities’ status as it takes action on single-use plastic.

Thatcham is proud to join a network of communities across the UK who are leading the way to tackle throw-away plastic at source. Thatcham has been awarded Plastic Free Community status by marine conservation charity, Surfers Against Sewage (SAS), in recognition of the work it has done to start reducing the impact of single-use plastic on the environment.

Registering with the SAS Plastic Free Communities movement, Nikki Coome, Jenny Kirby, Sam Carpenter and Eloise Morison pulled together key organisations and businesses in the town to put in place a five-point plan. The objectives include: setting up a community-led steering group, getting local council commitment and working with local businesses, organisations and community groups to spread the word and minimise the amount of disposable plastics they use.

‘’I’m absolutely thrilled that Thatcham has been awarded Plastic Free Community Status,” says Nikki Coome, Community Co-Lead, Plastic Free Thatcham. “Over the past couple of years, we have been asking business, community groups and the council to commit to reducing their single-use plastic one item at a time and we have had an amazing response. It reduces litter, the impact on our environment and wildlife and our carbon emissions. Making Thatcham a greener and nicer place to live. What’s not to love about that!

“We have amazing small businesses, schools and community groups on board that are doing the right thing in reducing their single use plastic and being rewarded for it.  We recently had family run Vanillo Bakery sign up.  They’ve really thought about how to reduce they’re plastic – serving their yummy cookies in paper bags or cardboard boxes, sealed with plastic-free stickers.  You are also welcome to bring your own container to transport your treat.  Something that we are encouraging other businesses to do.

“We plan to invite more business and community groups to join us, as well as working with Thatcham and West Berkshire Town Councils to provide more facilities to reduce single-use plastic demand and provide alternatives. Watch this space!’’

You can find out more about all of the Small Business Champions and Community Allies here: eco-friends.org.uk/our-champions-allies

For more information about Plastic Free Thatcham please contact Community Co-Leads, Nikki Coome or Jenny Kirby on plasticfree@eco-friends.org.uk

Surfers Against Sewage

The Surfers Against Sewage Plastic Free Community network aims to free the places where we live from single-use. Using the five point plan the aim is to empower communities to kick start local grassroots action, which can then be built upon.

The marine conservation charity, based in St Agnes in Cornwall, says it wants to unite communities to tackle avoidable plastic from the beach all the way back to the brands and businesses who create it. It says it is not about removing all plastic from our lives, but kicking our addiction to throwaway plastic and changing the system that produces it.

Rachel Yates, SAS Plastic Free Communities Project Manager, said: “It’s great to see the work that Thatcham has done to reduce the availability of avoidable plastics, raise awareness and encourage people to refill and reuse.

“We have over seven hundred communities across the UK working to reduce single use plastic and the impact it has on our environment. Every step those communities and the individuals in them take is a step towards tackling the problem at source, challenging our throwaway culture and encouraging the habit and system changes we need to see.”

Plastic Free Communities

Plastic Free Communities is an ambitious community initiative designed to unite and empower individuals, small businesses, local government and community groups to reduce their collective plastic footprint and protect the environment together. Driven by inspirational local volunteers, we are building a new and exciting community movement tackling single-use plastics and plastic litter in our villages, towns, cities and rural locations.   This highly inclusive initiative, created for all ages and backgrounds, is designed to get the whole community active and do something positive to reduce the amount of plastic in the local environment. We believe that united communities lead to cleaner beaches, streets, parks and riverbanks.

 

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