Swap, swap, swap before you shop, shop, shop!
The annual countywide swap shop is due to take place this Saturday, 23 January.
Thousands of items will change hands, money will be saved and the environment benefits from less waste. A series of swap shops are run by volunteer Community Action Groups (CAGs) where people can take any reusable items to be swapped.
Last year, Oxfordshire Waste Partnership (OWP) funded specialist equipment to enable groups to safety test electrical goods so that they too could be swapped. This has helped reuse items from toasters and kettles to extension leads. This year, electrical items will be swapped at Wheatley, Dorchester and Wallingford swap shops. Groups in Eynsham and Woodstock will also be collecting electricals to test for future events or to be recycled (2).
Simon Kenton, coordinates the CAGs on behalf of the county council. He says: “We decided to hold our annual countywide swap shop in January when people may have cleared out old stuff to make way for new items bought at Christmas or be left with unwanted gifts. People can pop along to a swap shop to pass on their items, but can just come along to browse for something they may want. The whole idea is to keep stuff out of landfill so you don’t have to swap: just bring or take!”
Last year over 2,000 people swapped around five tonnes of material, which may otherwise have ended up in the bin. Where possible, all leftover items are recycled.
OWP chair, Cllr John Tanner says: “Reusing is even better than recycling. If we’ve got items that we don’t want and someone else can make use of them that's ideal. Anyone having a sort out can drop into their nearest swap shop, go along to a car boot sale, donate the items to charity shop or simply give what you don't need to family and friends."
Each CAG is a unique group made up of local volunteers. They organise events and initiatives in their local community. Full details of the county council funded CAG project are available here.
- Electrical goods need to have a CE mark before they can be tested and be confirmed safe for reuse. Items that don’t pass the Portable Appliance Test (PAT) will be recycled.
- Swap shops taking place on Saturday 23rd January:
- The Merry Bells, Wheatley, 9:30 – 12:00
- Duns Tew, Village Hall, 9.30 to 12pm
- Dorchester-on-Thames Village Hall, 10am – 12pm
- Woodstock Community Centre, 10am – 12pm
- Thame Town Hall, 10am – 12pm
- Regal Centre, Wallingford, 10am – 12pm
- Eynsham Baptist Church Hall, 10am – 12pm
- Glow Hall Community Centre, Blackbird Leys, 11am – 2pm
- St Margaret’s Institute, North Oxford, 2pm – 4pm.