Eco-friendly bags a one-way boomerang
The worldwide Boomerang Bag craze has hit Eastbourne – but there’s one rather big problem.
As the name suggests, the shopping bags are meant to be used free of charge, washed if necessary, then returnedto one of the four wooden crates around the village for re-use – all aimed at cutting out single-use plastic bags.
However, they’ve proved so popular close to 600 bags flew out of the crates after the launch on April 7, but precious few have made it back.
‘‘There are lots of people joking about the bags being so gorgeous they don’t want to return them,’’ organiser Gen Packer said.
One of the other organisers had been keeping a close eye on the crates, and some bags were finally starting to trickle back.
‘‘My fellow organiser texted yesterday and said it looked like there seemed to be 30-odd bags in the bins, so that’s good,’’ Packer said.
She said ‘‘gentle reminders’’ would probably have to be used as people got into the swing of boomeranging the bags.
Still, even if the crates remained bagless, she said, they would serve as a reminder to ditch the plastic.
‘‘We’re talking about as a village going plastic-free. We’re trying to get into better habits.’’
Packer said living in a seaside town, Eastbourne residents were well aware of what ‘‘terrible’’ plastic could do, and locals often lent a hand doing beach cleanups.
More than a dozen women spent about 600 hours making the Boomerang Bags, starting from sorting the donated fabric to pinning and sewing the bags.
They aimed to make 500 bags. But they overshot their mark and ended up with 620, including around 30 bags to sell, with the funds going back into the initiative.
‘‘I think we’re quite fortunate in that we have about 4000, 5000 residents in the village, it’s not a thoroughfare, it’s at the end of the road.
‘‘We have a very tight retail village so the idea was if it can work anywhere, it can work here.’’
Amelie, Frankie and Henry help roll out the Boomerang Bag crates at the Eastbourne launch over Easter.