Family-run garden centre and farm shop, Garsons of Esher, has raised a staggering £2,567 for marine conservation along the south-east coastline, simply by asking for 5p for plastic carrier bags.
The sum has been collected over the 12-month period between April 2016 and March this year from the sale of bags at both Garsons Esher and it sister site in Titchfield, Hampshire and will be donated to the Marine Conservation Society.
"These funds will help us enormously,” says Ian Fraser, Head of Fundraising at the Marine Conservation Society. “Though we're a national charity, we've been working to help safeguard sea life at special sites around the Sussex coast, and we'll be back running cleans and surveys on beaches in Sussex and Hampshire this September."
Although not legally required to do so, Garsons only started charging for plastic bags in October 2015 in a bid to reduce the single use bags that often end up in our seas and oceans. If customers forget to bring a bag with them, they can make a 5p donation for one of Garsons’ degradable bags. In the first six months alone, the garden centre raised £1,500 for the charity.
“We are very proud to support the Marine Conservation Society and the invaluable work it does to protect our sea life and coastlines,” says Ben Thompson, Garsons director. “We have seen a notable drop in the use of bags which means our wonderful customers are equally prepared to help us in our quest to protect the environment.”
Photo caption: Garden centre sales assistant, Cara Taylor, with one of the reusable sustainable bags that have help raise vital funds for marine conservation.