RESIDENTS and business owners are being urged to become anti-plastic pioneers by cutting the amount used in their town.

Abingdon mayor Jan Morter officially launched the new campaign on Monday at the pop up shop unit in Bury Street. All this week members of Abingdon Carbon Cutters will be on hand in the store to talk about the best ways to reduce plastic use.

They will provide information about everything from the Oxfordshire-wide refill scheme, which allows people to fill their water bottle for free in cafes and shops, to where plastic recycling goes and what litter-picking activities are taking place locally.

The campaign has been created by the environmental action group, which has for a decade raised awareness about climate change and air quality, as well as promoting growing and cooking local food.

Members have now set up Abingdon Cuts Plastic to try to change the habits of residents and businesses in the town when it comes to recycling and using plastic.

Kat Kelly, who is part of the group, said they were inspired to tackle the issue as the public have become more aware of the problem following last year’s BBC Blue Planet II documentary series, which showed the devastating impact of plastic waste on wildlife.

She said: “The campaign is also about raising awareness but I think people now more than ever know the problem.

“They can feel like they don’t know what they can do to make a real difference though and the idea is to offer simple, practical steps people can take.”

There be stands at the carbon cutters pop up shop about what local businesses are already doing as well as general information.

Oxford-based group Sesi will also be in the shop all week, allowing people to bring their own containers to fill with ethical eco-friendly detergents and shampoo.

Mrs Morter said: “We’ll have talks each day during lunch time as well.

“On Thursday we’ve got someone coming from Vale district council to explain exactly what can and can’t be recycled in bin collections which should be really useful.

“Having Sesi there will also give us an idea about whether there is the demand for something more permanent with detergent refills.”

The mother-of-two added the group’s conversations with local businesses had also been positive, explaining: “I think businesses recognise that this is something the isn’t going away and there is a chance for smaller businesses to be really dynamic about what they do.

“Even big chains in the town like Waitrose are making changes nationally and the plastic bag charge has made a big difference.

“Some local businesses have already done a lot and it’s about working together to make changes as easy as possible for everybody.”

The 36-year-old said the group hoped to carry out a survey of current practices at the town’s businesses to keep track of the difference the campaign was making.

The pop up shop will be open 11am until 4.30pm today and tomorrow and 10am until 4.30pm on Friday and Saturday. Residents are welcome to drop in any time, with the majority of talks taking place at 12.30pm.

For more details visit or the group’s Facebook page.