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Stratford Zero plastic store to open in former hairdressers

A zero-plastic store will set up in the Rother Street building once occupied by long-standing hairdressers Coiffure by David.

The Zero store in Leamington
The Zero store in Leamington

Zero, owned and ran by Charlie Demetriou, will sell zero-plastic products from food to cleaning products, and she hopes the success of her Leamington store will be reproduced in Stratford.

Charlie, 39, said: “We'd previously done markets and pop-ups in Stratford, prior to when I opened the shop in Leamington. I had noticed the shop before and thought it was really nice, and in a lovely part of town.

“The landlord was really happy with the kind of business that I wanted to put there, so I’m just waiting for the keys and then we can get cracking with the renovations.”

Aware of its long life as a hairdresser’s – from New Year’s Day 1958 until last year – the Coventry resident said: “Inside it's still very original to that era. We've got lots of work to do but we also want to preserve original features where we can, because I know David Beacham was a bit of a local legend.”

Asked about her hopes for the store, Mrs Demetriou said: “It's really important to me not only to help people reduce single use plastic and buy more sustainable goods but also to be putting money back into the local economy.

“I have 66 different suppliers, and just under half of those are within 30 miles of the shop. Affordability is very much at the heart of it as well; it's about having different options so that people can make the choices that suit them and suit their budget.”

A concerted effort to ease the strain on the environment informs their ethos, as the mother of two explained: “We've all seen the horrendous damage that plastic pollution is doing to our planet, and overconsumption in general, as well as the impact that supermarkets have had on local independent shops over the decades.

“We know people want to make changes, but it's about them having access to that locally and then being able to do it. I really want to nurture people's desire to shop more locally and buy products that are more sustainable for our planet and the people who create those products.”

Asked whether she senses a change in attitudes, the business owner said: “It’s a way of shopping that previous generations had as the norm. What we do is more modern, more efficient and more hygienic, but essentially the process is still the same.

“I think the way people had to rely on lots of small local companies when the supermarkets couldn't deliver changed their mindset. They really appreciate those small companies, which have the flexibility and the adaptability to change their services.”

On the shops expected opening date, Charlie said: “It would be nice to be open for Christmas, but I would just advise people to keep an eye on our social media, as there’ll be updates when we get various parts of the work done.”

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