Today’s Advent Calendar window opens for the Refill Van, a mobile shop based in Rushden that serves Wellingborough, Northampton and North Northamptonshire. Their mobile shop is a weigh-and-pay style household goods refill store, with plastic and packaging free products. The Refill Van was started by friends Tarnya Bayes, Adam Mattacola and his wife Emma Mattacola in March this year and began trading in May during lockdown.
When Tarnya recently experienced a few big life changes, it made her seriously rethink how sustainable her lifestyle was. She’d always been passionate about ethical shopping, but it wasn’t always possible or easy to get exactly what she required without travelling. This inspired her to solve this problem for herself and other people by teaming up with Adam and Emma to set up the Refill Van. Here Tarnya gives us a tour of their mobile shop at one of their regular locations, Glendon Lodge Farm:
Emma, who takes care of the business’ social media and marketing, said: “We thought it was going to be really hard to start a business during a really difficult time, but actually, with people shielding, our van can turn up and it’s like a mobile market. It’s perfect for people avoiding shops or public transport or anything like that, because we can come to them. We like the idea of community and neighbourhoods coming together so groups could book the van to come and a few different households can visit.”
Designed to support sustainability and reduce waste, the mobile shop is stocked with a variety of dried goods including pasta, pulses, beans, cereals, nuts, loose teas and coffee beans. Customers can also replenish things like shampoo and conditioner, washing up liquid, household cleaners and hand soap, while items for sale include a range of bamboo toothbrushes, deodorants, reusable sandwich bags, plus much more. The full range can been seen on the website, at www.refillvan.co.uk, where you can also book your delivery or collection.
Refill Van brings the plastic-free market shopping experience to your doorstep, in a safe and contact free way. By booking online, via the website, you can have the van visit your house or street, allowing you to refill your own containers with household staples, thereby eliminating the excessive amount of packaging used in supermarkets. There is also the option of collecting directly from Rushden or visiting one of the many local markets that Refill Van frequents; Northampton, Kettering, Raunds, Scotch Lodge Farm and many of the Outdoor Vegan Markets!