A zero-waste shop in Walkden are hosting a costume swap for World Book Day.

The Dispensary is offering children the opportunity to donate a costume and collect a “new to you” costume to take home.

Christabel Fox, an employee at the shop, said: “People come in to drop off a costume and swap it for a new one, or if they haven’t got one to donate, they can just take a costume and make a donation to Little Hulton Food Club.”

Image Credit:Alyssa Berry

The Dispensary is Salford’s first zero-waste shop which opened over two years ago in Ellesmere Shopping Centre.

The shop offers vegan and environmentally friendly products ranging from washing up liquid to facial wash, to reduce waste and encourage reusing and recycling.

While World Book Day is an exciting event for children, buying a new costume every year can be damaging to the environment.

The Dispensary’s owner, Fay Watts, wanted to encourage recycling costumes rather than purchasing a new one.

Christabel said: “There is a lot of waste around kids’ costumes, especially because they are so available in supermarkets for cheap prices”

“But a lot of them (children’s costumes) are made out of plastic, they get used once and then thrown away, they get added to landfill”

The Dispensary’s costume swap has been running for two weeks with many children from around Salford joining in.

Christabel said: “I think the kids see the costume rail outside and just get really excited, so they’ve loved it”

She said it had been a “steady flow” every day since announcing the event.

The Dispensary had held two other clothes swaps, Christabel said: “We had one for Halloween that worked really well, and we did a clothes swap event which took over the top floor of the shopping centre, and that was really successful.”

Christabel also said costume and clothes swaps had also been an opportunity to welcome new custom.

She said: “The clothes rail outside is eye-catching so people walk past all day saying, ‘that’s a good idea’ and so they have a wander into the shop”

“It’s been a really good conversation starter and a good way to get people into the shop.”

Due to the success of the Dispensary’s third clothes shop event, the shop is hoping to have a clothes swap rail outside the shop permanently.

Christabel said: “We’ll just keep some costumes on there, some women’s clothing and some men’s clothing, just whatever people can donate.”

This year is the 25th Anniversary of World Book Day on Thursday 3rd March.

World Book Day is a charity which aims to promote reading among children and young people.

The annual event offers children in the UK a voucher to spend on books.

Some schools and events encourage children to dress up as their favourite book character for World Book Day and so the Dispensary’s costume swap gives the opportunity to swap costumes rather than purchasing new.

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