Planet South Bank’s Street Re:Cycle on Sunday 17 September was its most popular yet.
Thirty one households took part in the South Bank-wide event, which ran from 11.00am until 3.00pm (although most packed up at 2.00pm when a heavy downpour commenced).
The event, which took place in front gardens and yards (and some back yards) in York streets from Clementhorpe to the Knavemire, saw local people putting out their unwanted belongings and either selling, giving them away or collecting for charities.
Some even offered food to tempt the “punters”, with fresh banana bread and buns on offer, while free cooking apples were given away courtesy of Abundance and Edible York.
This year a new dimension was added to the event with the services of GoodGym York, who ran around between the participating households, acting both as messengers and couriers for those who wanted heavy or bulky goods carrying home.
While the overcast weather proved a dampener towards the end of the event and footfall was variable, a number of those that responded to the feedback survey said they particularly enjoyed the neighbourliness it encouraged.
“Kids on our street entertaining themselves and visiting each others’ stalls” wrote one respondent, while another commented it had been useful “for the fun and community”.
While the number of participating houses was up this year, the event still needs greater take up to really prove successful and targeted promotion in participating streets/areas would be beneficial.
The event was widely publicised with paid promotion on Facebook, over 2,000 postcards delivered door to door, promotion on Twitter, posters in shops and on noticeboards, a listing in the Clements Hall newsletter (also hand delivered to local households), promotion at the local ward committee meeting and by Nunnery Lane Residents Association and write ups in The Press and York Mix. Some respondents still felt the event needed wider advertising, however.
Next year we can look at promotion in City of York Council newsletter and will seek to get more support from the wider One Planet York network – hopefully other parts of York might consider doing it, too!
York is twinned with Munster and one respondent commented that, in Munster, people putting their unwanted stuff outside their houses happens regularly, once a month on Sunday mornings. Perhaps we can learn lessons from our European twinned city!
Planet South Bank would like to thank everyone that took part with such gusto. If all those who took part this year can encourage one or two more households on their street to do it as well next year (and we get some sun) it could be a very impactful event.
In the meantime, we feel pleased that we are making good strides in community building and recycling!