Joanna and Boris Launch London Reuse Network
Hammersmith and Fulham one of the first boroughs to benefit
Actress Joanna Lumley OBE has joined forced with Mayor Boris Johnson to announce the creation of the world's largest 'reuse network', helping household items find a new home rather than being chucked away.
£8 million funding from the London Waste and Recycling Board (LWARB) will will go to the London Community Resource Network (LCRN) a charitable social enterprise who will set up the network to address the 65,000 tonnes of household products are thrown out by Londoners each year.
These items, including everything from books to bicyles end up in costly landfill sites and add both to carbon emissions and council bills, when most of them could be reused or repaired.
The first cluster will be set up by Western Riverside Waste Authority who manage waste from Hammersmith and Fulham, as well as Lambeth, Wandsworth and Kensington and Chelsea.
Residents with reusable items - including furniture, carpets, cookers and fridges - will be able to call a telephone hotline to arrange a collection, and the items will be taken to a workshop at Smugglers Way Waste Transfer Station in Wandsworth where they will be repaired and made ready for resale.
The workshop, which will be run by environmental regeneration charity Groundwork London, will also be a training centre for ever 40 unemployed 18 to 24 year olds in the first year.
The scheme aims to divert 17,000 tonnes of reusable products from landfill over the first two years, saving over 80,000 tonnes of carbon emissions. By 2015 the network aims to be saving over a million items from being thrown away, training thousands and employing hundreds of people.
Posing for pictures with Joanna, who is a keen supporter of the London Community Resource Network, Mayor Boris said: " ‘It is a common sense use of our natural resources that we provide ways for people to hand in items they no longer need, but which still have plenty of useful life in them.
" This funding is really welcome news, helping to create a service for Londoners to do exactly that and help to slash the mountain of waste being sent unnecessarily to landfill and cut the heavy economic costs of doing so."