Windsor residents gathered together on Saturday 24 February to attend a Swap Shop organised by the Sawyers Close Residents’ Association, in partnership with housing provider Radian and the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead. The event gave residents the opportunity to donate furniture, clothes, ornaments and household essentials, in exchange for picking up other items for free. Over 450 items were donated and those that had not been taken at the end of the day were generously donated to the Thames Hospice.
The Swap Shop is part of a wider furniture project run by Radian to encourage the reuse and recycling of useable items and the event provided a great opportunity to develop relationships within the local community. Future events of this kind will be invaluable for new residents moving to the area, who may otherwise struggle to procure all the household items they need to get set up in their new home.
Leader of the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, Councillor Simon Dudley, thanked Radian for their community leadership on Swap Shop and said of the scheme: “It is a fantastic initiative to assist people to achieve independence in a place we all call home; the most important thing everyone should have.”
In addition to the residents of Sawyers Close, the event was attended by five of the borough’s local councillors, as well as representatives from Thames Valley Police. Councillor Lynda Yong, who represents the Sunninghill and South Ascot ward, is also very supportive of the scheme. She said: “This is a very exciting project that the Borough has supported. It will help some of the most vulnerable residents in our area to find much needed household items, helping to avoid getting into spiralling debt repayments. These type of events can also help residents to get to know each other, as well as reduce landfill. With exciting future plans, it is hoped that this project can be expanded to other areas.”
Radian’s Community Development Officer, Lyn Mangisi, said of the event: “Swap Shops are a great way to pick up a bargain. No money changes hands and lots of useful items are diverted from landfill to the people who will benefit most. They also help to discourage fly-tipping, which in turn means less money from service charges is wasted removing bulky items on the estate, benefiting the residents. The Sawyers Close Residents’ Association has been organising activities on the estate for over seventeen years and this creates great opportunities for people to get involved in their community.”