At last night’s meeting of Hexham Town Council Bob Hull, Mayor of Hexham, announced that the winner of the Mayor’s Environmental Award for 2020 was the Matthias Winter shop on Hallstile Bank in Hexham. This award was created as part of the Town Council’s Sustainability Action Plan. Bob Hull said that he had made the award on the basis that since opening the shop in 2017 the proprietor, Alison Smith, has progressively created a unique retail business that is rooted in a sustainability approach. She is always willing to consider new initiatives, even when there is no clear benefit for her business. These initiatives have included:
- Creating a recycling directory for Hexham
- Acting as a recycling point for many items not recycled by the County Council, such as crisp packets, biscuit wrappers and Pringles tubes
- Opening the first ‘refill station’ in Hexham where people can refill their common household cleaners and toiletries, reducing the amount of plastic going into the environment
- Constantly exploring new ways of reducing environmental impact through new sustainable products
- Acting as a beacon of sustainability in Hexham by providing friendly advice, both in the shop and on social media
- Stocking products from local producers and crafts people
The Mayor said “It is people like Alison, persuading others to take small steps towards a more sustainable lifestyle, who have the greatest impact on preserving and enhancing our environment in the town”.