Conran: Reuse and Recycle

Walking to work this morning Holly-Anne Rolfe from Conran & Company saw an opportunity not to be missed.

Like any design company we tend to have a lot of stuff hanging around the office, and the usual 6 -12 monthly purges are always accompanied by piles of bin bags and never ending processions of people carrying cardboard boxes full to the brim down to the recycling bin.

Like any good hoarder I can’t bear throwing away anything that looks vaguely reusable and every time there’s a move or a clearout I’m laughed at as I constantly scratch around for uses for bits of old upholstery fabric, out of date branded CDs or large scale paper versions of bed linen designs now currently filling the shelves of John Lewis.

A while back through an involvement I have with the education dept at Tate Modern I was alerted to scrapstores – recycling warehouses which support the reuse of unwanted resources for the benefit of children and communities; fabulous places filled with bright rolls of unwanted paper from photoshoots, vast bags of foam, trimmings and off cuts and weird plastic things that no one seems able to identify but which make excellent additions to that cardboard box space ship or paper mache head. They all have different means of accessing their scrap materials. In some you need to pay an individual membership fee, at others you simply pay for the scrap you take on the day.

So I was delighted walking through Potters Fields on my way to work this morning to see a group of people gathering underneath a tent with ‘Scrapstores UK’ emblazoned on the side, bright bins of materials spilling out onto the grass, long, coloured hose pipes, quirky foam shapes and bits of string spiralling out as I was almost knocked over by legions of holidaying children rushing past me in shiny gold foil gladiator capes and corrugated paper crowns.


Today’s event on the grass marked the launch of the hundred odd scrapstores around the country teaming up and working together sharing knowledge, funding, opportunities, press and scrap under the banner of Scrapstores UK.

Perfect timing as I had quite a few boxes and bags worth of recyclable wares I had squirreled away from the last clear out. So down we went to Tower Bridge to donate!


Nikki DiGiovanni, the National Coordinatior of the project, was pleased to see us

‘Over 1million people are currently using scrapstores around the UK so we are always on the look out for more stuff!’

It was great to see so many people taking advantage of this great and green creative opportunity -and it was very good to get rid of all those black bin bags under the stairs…


I hope lots of other companies decide to contribute to the scheme too – it’s brilliant to see things we would throw away being reused, bringing so much pleasure and encouraging such creativity.

For info please see: www.scrapstoresuk.org

Did you know?

It’s better if possible to recycle glass separately and divide it by colour as this greatly improves the chances of it being recycled back into usable glass.

Quite often when glass is mixed or ‘polluted’ with other materials it gets reused as road surfacing which means it only gets recycled once. Recycling glass properly means more beautiful recycled glass for the future.

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1 Comment

Filed under Conran & Company, Conran and London

One response to “Conran: Reuse and Recycle

  1. Pingback: Conran:..Keeping it Green… |

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