The aptly named ReUse shop has recently been given a vibrant new look to match its style and ethos.
The shop, which is run out of King’s Road Reuse and Recycling centre in Chingford, Waltham Forest is operated by LondonEnergy Ltd and is stocked entirely with second hand items which people have either brought to one of our eight reuse and recycling centres (RRCs) for disposal or specifically donated to the shop by waste conscious residents.
Created in 2015, the ReUse shop has been saving usable items from going to waste by selling them to local residents at very affordable prices. For years it has been the go-to place for second hand enthusiasts such as antiques dealers and car boot sellers but now it’s becoming increasingly popular with local residents and young couples looking for a unique bargain. In true circular fashion, proceeds from the shop go towards covering the salaries of the two permanent staff members who organise stock, research history and value of older items and ensure health and safety regulations are adhered to in terms of what can and cannot be sold. Just since May 2021 it has diverted 40,000 kgs of items from the waste stream and found them new homes instead.
Items at the shop can range from vintage typewriters, vinyl records, inexpensive kitchenware as well as rare and vintage pieces of furniture. It’s a treasure trove of quality items, great for upcycling and is the perfect antidote for the cookie cutter flat pack items which are so frequently discarded.
NLWA Chair Cllr Clyde Loakes said: “The ReUse Shop is one of the ways North London Waste Authority is able to utilise the scores of items residents no longer need but which could still be used by somebody else. Making them available for sale means that items are diverted from waste and instead are given a new home for many years to come.
“The culture of buying cheap, low-quality items is so pervasive in our lives that the environmental cost of constantly buying new or “in-trend” items isn’t discussed as much as it should. If we want to combat our impact on the environment, we need to examine our purchasing habits and for that reason it’s becoming increasingly important to normalise second hand shopping. The Climate Emergency is real and ever present and if we’re to keep global heating to below 2°C we have to move away from the disposal mindset and shift to purchasing items that are already in existence and which do not add to our growing carbon problem.
“It goes without saying that second hand shopping is also far kinder on our bank accounts than buying new, especially during this time of a cost of living crisis.”
The ReUse shop operates out of Kings Road Reuse and Recycling centre and is open Wednesdays to Saturdays from 9am to 4pm.