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28 October 2014

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You are in: Hampshire > Features > Green Living > A recycled year

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A recycled year

Could you live for a year without buying anything new? A family from Woolston are taking on the challenge of living in 2008 using only recycled goods.

Jo Clark, her husband and three children have begun a year-long "no-shopping" experiment to live through 2008 without buying anything new.

The family got the idea after reading an article in the Daily Telegraph about a San Francisco group that calls itself The Compact.

The group works on the basis that you have to live with only what you already have in your home for a year, and can only buy 'new' things secondhand.

This in turn prevents the need for more stuff being made and eventually ending up in landfill.

There are some exceptions, food, medicines and underwear are exempt from the rules and their three children each have an allowance of £50 for the whole year.

"In the couple of weeks that I've been doing this, I've realised how much you go 'oh that's nice, I'll just have that'.  And you don't really think about the consequences and whether you need it,"  explained Jo.

The family will clothe themselves through hand me downs and charity shops and will swap toys, games and books with their friends - any household items will need to be found from the local tip or an online recycling site like Freecycle.

BBC Radio Solent's Julian Clegg breakfast programme will be following the family throughout the year - you'll also be able to listen to their latest news via the audio links on this page.

last updated: 21/01/2008 at 14:27
created: 15/01/2008

Have Your Say

Could you live without buying anything new? Have you got any tips for the Clark family?

The BBC reserves the right to edit comments submitted.

June Symonds and Family
Dear Julian and Team,I heard the story of the Clark family this morning and thought what a great challenge it is. My hubby is happy to try it and most of all i want to see how i can cope with it! I am the shopaholic in this family! We have a 2 year old daughter and so it would be intersting for her too! I assume disposable nappies are permitted. Though potty training, we are not quite there yet i'm afraid. Our challenge will begin from tomorrow 16th January 2008. We will keep you informed of our progress.One other thought i have is the little one's feet is growing so presumably we are allowed to buy her shoes when she is next measured?Good luck to the Clark family. June,Ian and Jasmin Symonds Sixpenny Handley

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