Refuse, Choose, Request, Carry, Reuse, Create, Reduce…

For anyone who was affected by the distressing scenes on David Attenborough’s Blue Planet and inspired to reduce our plastic pollution, this page includes ideas for ways you can start to reduce your own personal use of plastics. These ideas are NOT a to-do list! 🙂 Just a collection of opportunities. Some may feel possible and easy, others may be way out of reach… start where you want to.

To Begin With Stand Back, and…

1. Start to notice the single use plastics in your own life.

2. Consider ways that you can easily make changes – maybe use the lists below for ideas, and also check out the local resources at the bottom of the page.

3. Talk to friends, family & colleagues about what you are doing.

4. Join campaigns to demand corporate and legislative changes to support your actions.

And Then Maybe…

  • Single use plastic
  • Bottled water & drinks
  • Plastic bags in shops
  • New plastic clothing – choose natural fibres
  • Mailing lists – reduce those plastic envelope windows
  • Chewing gum – its made of plastic
  • Frozen & convenience foods that are packaged in plastic
  • Disposable plastic pens?
  • New CDs and DVDs…. Listen online or buy second-hand
  • The little plastic “table” in the middle of the pizza box ..?
  • Erm… there’s so much more! …
  • To be creative about the way you shop
  • Walk out and buy local fresh bread and vegetables at lunchtime
  • Shop at your local market / farmers market / whole food shop
  • Request that your local shops package dried ingredients in plant based cellophane not plastic (like the lovely people at Fodder in Hereford)
  • Use bulk bins & non-plastic bags for dried food items
  • Buy lotions and lip balms in plastic-free containers
  • Toilet paper that’s not wrapped in plastic
  • Plastic free nappies and sanitary products (see resources list below for details)
  • Pencils … or a refillable fountain pen & ink bottle
  • Handkerchiefs instead of plastic wrapped paper tissues
  • Spin salad without using plastic…
  • Re-use plastic containers or use glass / stainless steel food storage containers instead of cling film
  • Buy powered dishwasher detergent in a cardboard box, and refill your cleaning product bottles at filling stations around the county (check the Resources List below)
  • Natural cleaning cloths and recycled scrubbers instead of new plastic scrubbers and synthetic sponges
  • Natural rubber gloves
  • Bar soap instead of liquid hand soap..
  • Natural cat litter
  • Soap nuts in plastic-free packaging
  • A bamboo toothbrush! Available at Fodder in Hereford and The Apothecary in Ledbury (see below)
  • An ice cream in a cone instead of a wrapper or tub
  • Fresh bread that comes in a paper bag
  • Milk in returnable glass bottles – there are still plenty of local milk deliveries in Herefordshire (check the Resource list below..)
  • Local cheeses wrapped in non-plastic papers
  • Wine bottled in glass with natural cork stoppers
  • Zero plastic packaging when ordering items online…
  • Reusable shopping bags
  • Your own containers for takeaways and leftovers
  • A stainless steel travel mug for coffee and other drinks… or just sit down for a minute in a cafe and request a crockery mug
  • Reusable utensils and glass drinking straws if you would otherwise tend to pick up plastic
  • Shop second-hand for any really necessary longer-term plastic items
  • Buy secondhand games, and toys & refurbished electronic equipment
  • Support your local Repair Cafes
  • Return plastic containers etc. to shops for reuse
  • Different habits…
  • Your own lunchtime sandwich…
  • Your own bread
  • Your own homemade yogurt
  • Your own nut / bean / oat milk
  • Make your own snacks
  • Make your own compost
  • Wrap gifts with ribbon and string instead of sellotape…
  • Your own shampoo! Click here for ideas

Resource List

Herefordshire Farmers Markets:

The Herefordshire Farmers’ Market Association currently organises monthly farmers markets in: Hereford, Ledbury, Leominster and Ross-on-Wye.

Weekly in Hereford on Thursday 9am – 2pm.
Monthly in Ross-on-Wye on the 1st Friday 9am – 1pm.
Monthly in Hereford on the 1st Saturday 9am – 2pm.
Monthly in Leominster on the 2nd Saturday 9am – 1pm.
Monthly in Ledbury on the 4th Friday 9am – 2pm.



Herefordshire shops with Refill Stations for cleaning products:

Hereford: Fodder, 26-27 Church St, Hereford HR1 2LR

Ledbury: The Apothecary, 31 Homend, Ledbury, HR8 1BN

Leominster: WholeFoods, 24 West Street, Leominster, HR6 8ES

Bromyard: those with local knowledge, please send us your links…

Ross: FieldFayre, 18 – 19 Broad Street, Ross-on-Wye, HR9 7EA

Kington: those with local knowledge, please send us your links…

Ledbury Hardware have Dri Pak bicarbonate of soda and borax for cleaning. Or use white vinegar for cleaning – packaged in a glass bottle.

Local Milk Deliveries using returnable glass bottles:

Hereford: Bartonsham Farm Dairies:



Local veggie box schemes (without plastic wrapping):

Little Marcle Farm Shop, Little Marcle Road, Ledbury, HR8 2NJ

Growing Local

Arkstone Mill



Reusable Nappies and sanitary product advice:

Worcestershire & Herefordshire Nappy Service:

And if your local shops cant help, try the Plastic Free Shop



National Campaigns:


Greenpeace campaign calling on UK supermarkets to ditch throwaway plastic packaging.



Videos and other resources:

… from the BBC

TEDx: Why Plastic Pollution is Personal



Please send your own suggestions for this page to

And if you are looking for even more inspiration, check out the activities of Plastic Free Powys: 

… And let us all know if you plan to do set up something similar in Herefordshire!