Three years of Recycle Swap Shops

Three years ago Rye saw its first Recycle Swap Shop, in October 2012. Publicity had been done, the room was set up, the team had brought some stuff to give away to get the ball rolling, and we waited nervously to see if people would turn up…
DSC_4977 Rye Recycle Swap Shop Oct 2012And they did! Around 300 people attended the first event, packing out St Mary’s Centre!

Recycle Swap Shop in Rye, Jan 2014The upcoming event at St Mary’s Centre (21 Nov 2015) will be the eighth at the venue, but we’ve also had nine events at the Tilling Green Centre, where the additional space and parking spaces are much appreciated!

DSC_3518One of the slightly odd things we do at the Recycle Swap Shops is weigh what people are taking away. We also weigh anything taken to charity shops or for disposal at the recycling centre.


The reason for doing this is to measure our impact. So here’s what’s happened over three years:

  • Almost 3,000 visitors
  • 6,700kg of stuff brought by people
  • 4,500kg taken away by people
  • 1,300kg given to charity shops
  • 570kg recycled

We’re delighted that about 86% was reused in some way, leaving just 9% to be recycled and 5% to landfill! This isn’t the only benefit though – visitors have cleared out cupboards, lofts and garages, and then been able to pick up useful things for free.  Many leave a donation on the way out, or buy a hot drink at the café, and the combined takings have so far covered the cost of renting the venues and running the events.

There’s one more Recycle Swap Shop for 2015, on Sat 21 Nov at St Mary’s Centre, from 09:30-12:00 – but don’t forget you have to bring stuff by 11am!

We also have provisional dates booked for 2016, so please put these in your diary:

  • Sat 16 Jan (Tilling Green)
  • Sat 9 April (St Mary’s Centre)
  • Sat 18 June (Tilling Green)
  • Sat 15 October (St Mary’s Centre)

Finally, we’d like to thank all the willing volunteers who help out every time, including people from Tilling Green Residents Association, St Mary’s Church, Transition Rye and many others.

Look forward to seeing you at the upcoming events!

Recycle Swap Shop logo

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