Coalville: The Ibstock shop which is putting climate change at the top of the agenda

By Graham Hill

24th Aug 2021 | Local News

An eco-friendly shop has been set up in Ibstock to find new and more sustainable solutions to tackle waste and take a step towards battling climate change.

Fran Barney started her No Frills Refills with that in mind - encouraging people to re-use items and do what they can to help the planet at the same time.

She says it is more than just a shop or a business, it is part of the community and working together to help as many people as possible.

Fran said: "I've lived in Ibstock for the majority of my life so I couldn't be happier that I've been able to find premises for my shop, No Frills Refills right here in the village. 

"It has grown from a passionate belief that we as individuals can, and should, do what we are able, to make a difference to climate change.

"Doing something is better than doing nothing and the notion that 'it's pointless because…' is simply a cop out, whatever the end of that sentence might be!"

Fran explained how the shop came to be.

She said: "My friend Karen was in part the inspiration for starting my own business when she began running a local pop-up in our village selling household and bodycare refills.

"Thank you Karen! I'd wanted to do something myself for a long time and when COVID-19 came along I had an opportunity to think about what I might do to complement Karen's work.

"With a huge amount of encouragement and support from family and friends, No Frills Refills began!

"We're more than just a shop or a business, we are part of the community and we're working together to find new and more sustainable solutions for as many people as possible.

"We aim to do this in the most convenient AND affordable way we can.

"Refills are a manageable change you can sustain despite leading busy lives. 

"We also know how important it is to support each other so we try to link up with other local independent businesses as much as possible. 

"No Frills Refills offers an eco-friendly shopping experience with a great range of affordable food, household and bodycare refills as well as lots and lots of other eco-friendly products.

"You can find us at 13 Chapel Street, Ibstock or online  HERE.

"I still also have a 'day job' so the shop is open part-time at the moment, Thursday/Friday, 10am until 4pm and Saturday 8:30am until 2pm.

"However, you can order many of our items for local delivery or click and collect through our website.

"No Frills Refills will always be a 'work in progress' it will grow and develop and we always welcome your input, we ask you to share your own tips and ideas with us so we can all continue to learn some of the simple ways to live more sustainably.

"I'm not an eco-warrior whatever that term actually means and I am far from perfect when it comes to living sustainably, there is so much more I could do.

"However, the common phrase shared by likeminded people explains my beliefs: 'We don't need a handful of people doing zero waste perfectly, we need millions of people doing it imperfectly' - Anne Marie Bonneau."

Fran explained how climate change gradually became a more important issue in her life.

She added: "I suspect a lot of people have gone through a similar 'journey' to me as far as growing concerns about our planet. 

"I became aware of climate change some time ago and in particular, the detrimental affects of plastic pollution on our environment.

"I started to make just a few simple changes to my day-to-day living through re-useable bags and generally recycling more; the kind of thing most of us do, but looking back this was with minimal conviction.

"I've gradually learned from others different ways to live more sustainably and finding alternative to reduce waste has been a big part of this.

"I believe convenience has played a major role in climate change to one extent or another.

"We all live amazingly busy lives and to help us combat this, many so-called solutions have been developed, not least plastic packaging and understandably without too much thought or insight we've welcomed this with open arms.

"Now, thankfully, we're all becoming more aware of the consequences of this and want to do our bit.

"Plastic in particular is more of an issue when it comes to recycling than many other materials, it can only ever be 'downcycled' and only a very limited number of times so it either takes an eternity to degrade polluting the environment and causing harm to wildlife or contaminates the environment by being destroyed some other way.

"With a little more thought, understanding and sometimes effort, we could avoid recycling millions of items by using the well known 'R words' ~  'refuse, reduce, re-use, re-purpose, re-gift.

"Once we've exhausted those options it's then we then choose to recycle!

"No Frills Refills aims to be part of the solution."


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