Revellers at this year’s Glastonbury Music Festival were given the opportunity to confess their waste sins, and to learn the difference between re-using and recycling.
The Furniture Re-use Network (FRN) – in a typical example of practising what it preaches – re-used one of the old `Big Brother’ chairs donated by the TV production company – Endemol. The charity recreated its own `Diary Room’, with the intention of enabling festival-goers to confess not only their waste sins, but to discuss re-use, and to pledge to reuse and donate furniture, electricals and other goods via FRN’s postcode finder, long after the festival is a blurred and distant memory.As Craig Anderson, CEO of FRN says “It was a lot of fun but we had a very clear set of outcomes for the event. We knew people wanted to be photographed in the chair and to tweet it to friends; but FRN had a very serious intent to promote re-use. The term `circular economy’ doesn’t mean much to the general public but by re-using, they are actually part of it and applying the principles. And from FRN’s perspective by re-using the `waste’ of others, we’re alleviating poverty for nearly 1 million low income households each year”.
The fact that waste is a poverty issue is a crucial one for FRN; for the re-use charities it supports and leads; and for the
hundreds of thousands of people and families in need that they help.
Festival-goers were educated on the social purpose and poverty alleviation benefit of re-using, in addition to the economic and environmental outcomes.
“I think we were amazed at the depth and quality of discussions that took place and the variety of people who visited the FRN tent, ranging from charities, NHS workers and prospective MPs, to bankers, venture capitalists and the odd ape or two. It was a fantastic fact-finding and profile-raising experience for us. We certainly managed to convey the social purpose of our work”.
As we tweeted from the event `Revellers choose to sleep on the ground for 3-4 nights; thousands of people
have no choice but to do it for weeks and months on end’.