A ZERO-plastic store has opened its doors in Stratford and its owner hopes to transform the buying habits of residents, as well as live up to the “legendary” status of the shop’s former inhabitant.
“Zero”, owned and run by Charlie Demetriou, sells zero-plastic products from food to cleaning products, and has opened its doors in Rother Street on the former site of long-serving hairdressers Coiffure by David.
The shop is a sister store to the already successful Zero shop in Leamington.
Ms Demetriou hopes the Stratford store will be just as successful as the Leamington one.
She said: “We’d previously done markets and pop-ups in Stratford, prior to when I opened the shop in Leamington. I had noticed the shop before and thought it was really nice, and in a lovely part of town”.
The shop stands on the former site of Coiffure by David, which enjoyed an incredibly long-life as a hairdressers in the town, opening on New Year’s Day 1958 and closing its doors last year. Its owner, David Beacham was a well-known character around the town.
Ms Demetriou said that when she first took over the space it was very true to its era and she wanted to preserve the original features where she could.
She also feels very strongly about helping Stratford people reduce the amount of plastic they use in their everyday lives.
She said: “It’s really important to me not only to help people reduce single use plastic and buy more sustainable goods but also to be putting money back into the local economy.
“I have 66 different suppliers, and just under half of those are within 30 miles of the shop. Affordability is very much at the heart of it as well – it’s about having different options so that people can make the choices that suit them and suit their budget.
“We’ve all seen the horrendous damage that plastic pollution is doing to our planet, and over-consumption in general, as well as the impact that supermarkets have had on local independent shops over the decades”.
The mum-of-two continued: “We know people want to make changes, but it’s about them having access to that locally and then being able to do it. I really want to nurture people’s desire to shop more locally and buy products that are more sustainable for our planet and the people who create those products.
“It’s a way of shopping that previous generations had as the norm. What we do is more modern, more efficient and more hygienic, but essentially the process is still the same.
“I think the way people had to rely on lots of small local companies when the supermarkets couldn’t deliver changed their mindset. They really appreciate those small companies, which have the flexibility and the adaptability to change their services”, she added.