Reduce, Reuse, Recycle with Rushden Lakes

Posted 6th September 2023

Rushden Lakes is hosting a variety of activities this September to shine a light on the importance of sustainability Plastic free crafts, wildlife walks and chatty couches are just some of the initiatives running throughout the month to help sustain the environment and shopper wellbeing. The destination believes that one small action like donating a pre-loved item or choosing a plant-based meal, can have a big impact on the environment in the long term.

After a successful summer, Rushden Rangers is back with a one-off adventure, ‘Good & Green Gardening’ on Saturday 9th September with The Wildlife Trust. Budding gardeners can join the friendly team at 10am, 11am, 7pm and 2pm for just fl.SO each, to learn about the importance of bees, worms and water. Exploring Rushden Lakes’ vegetable patch and crafting a seed ball to take home is also on the agenda. Each ranger will be gifted a free notebook, pencil kit and drawstring bag to remember their unbeleafble day, and the accompanying adult will also receive a reusable tote bag too. Book tickets by visiting the Rushden Lakes website.

And that’s not the only activity available at The Wildlife Trust, the charity that brings people close to nature, and supports the wildlife and wild places in the local area. On Friday 22nd September, participants aged 72+ can head to the Nene Wetlands Visitor Centre to learn how to make plastic free products including beeswax wraps, bath bombs and body scrubs for free. The four one-hour sessions that are available to pre-book, are a great way to discover how to make simple swaps from everyday plastic items such as cling film.

Donna French, Rushden Lakes Centre Manager said, “We’re excited to launch our ‘We Can Do More’ campaign during September to raise awareness and celebrate the sustainable initiatives that can be found here at Rushden Lakes. Many of our brands and businesses, as well as the wider community also champion sustainability throughout the year, so it’s great that we can highlight this to our shoppers”

For a small fee, visitors can take part in a handful of activities at The Nene Wetlands to discover the beautiful lakes and surroundings, which is home to various wildlife inhabitants and promotes biodiversity. Become a Wildlife Wanderer on the Wednesday 6th September and join a two-hour guided tour around the nature reserve that includes the lakes, meadows and reed beds. Behold bats at Skew Bridge Lake aka ‘Bat Alley’ on Friday 8th September during an after-dark guided Bat Walk. Then, get crafty during the Willow Weaving session in the Community Garden on Thursday 14th September and try your hand at making a willow obelisk, which is perfect for training climbing plants. Home schooled little ones aged 4-17 year-olds can also attend the Forest School every Thursday in September to learn about nature, gain new skills and join activities including conservation projects.

Rushden Lakes is also not forgetting how important it is to sustain customer wellbeing. On Friday 15th September, a two-seater sofa will be arriving at Rushen Lakes to give visitors the opportunity to stop, sit and talk about their mental health. The ‘Take a Break’ campaign, ran by Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust (NHFT) aims to raise awareness of suicide prevention, the services that the trust can provide, and to reduce stigma around suicide and self-harm.

The shopping and leisure destination champions sustainable initiatives not only in September, but all year round. Earlier this year, Rushden Lakes began supporting ‘Helipads for Hospitals’, a charity that collects and melts aluminium cans to help produce helipads. Shoppers are asked to drop bags of empty cans to Customer Services to contribute to the cause and ultimately help others and the environment. Cans are also separated from their own recycled waste too.

When it comes to travel, Rushden Lakes encourages visitors to take a break from driving and consider other methods of transportation, including cycling or walking the picturesque routes that link the destination to nearby towns. Ample cycle racks are located around site, and e-bikes at AJ Cycles and VOi E-Scooters are also available. This year, World Car Free Day falls on Friday 22nd September, and to raise awareness, Rushden Lakes will be launching an exciting incentive for visitors who travel car-free on this day. An announcement about the incentive will be posted on their social channels, so make sure to keep an eye out. For visitors who do travel by car, Pod Point charging points for electric vehicles are accessible, and designed to support a low-carbon future.

Brands at Rushden Lakes are endorsing reusing, recycling and repurposing, many of which reward shoppers during the process. H&M gifts customers with a thank you voucher in exchange for donated clothes from any brand, schuh rewards customers with a f5 voucher for every pair of unwanted or outgrown shoes that’re donated to their ‘Sell Your Soles’ and ‘Too Big For Your Boots’ initiatives, and Marks and Spencer offers 20% off kids’ daywear when pre­ loved M&S school uniform or clothing is recycled with their ‘Shwopping’ initiative. Similarly, L’Occitane also provides a 70% discount on purchases in-store when empties from any brand are recycled with them. Alongside this beauty initiative that cleans, shreds and transforms old products into new raw material, Boots also want to play a part in contributing to a greener future with their own recycling scheme. Take five empty products in-store to their recycling point and they’ll give you 500 Boots Advantage Card points when you spend flO or more (that’s worth f5).

Other recycling initiatives include Clarks asking for donations of pre-loved footwear to their ‘ShoeShare’ scheme that aims to divert items from landfill and raise funds for charity, Primark inviting shoppers to place unwanted clothing in their ‘Let Your Pre-loved Be Re-loved’ blue donation boxes, and Cotswold Outdoor encouraging customers to drop unwanted items into their ‘Recycle My Gear’ boxes in-store to be later reused or recycled.

And let’s not forget those brands promoting responsible shopping. The Body Shop, who opened its doors in June, boasts Refill Stations where customers can pop in-store to pick up an aluminium bottle and fill with refillable haircare, shower gel or hand wash favourites. Similarly, L’Occitane takes pride in its refill options, which packaging can be 700% recycled at home. 26 of their products are available in em-refill formats, that aims to reduce plastic consumption and pollution. This theme continues across the site all the way to The Nene Wetlands Visitor Centre, who have set up their own refill stations of local and naturally sourced products, ranging from washing up liquid to hair wash.

When it comes to refreshments, Rushden Lakes has many sustainable options. For instance, Costa Coffee is committed to providing sustainable solutions for their customers by using 700% plant-based, renewable material takeaway cups and stocking a range of colourful reusable options. The coffee brand, Greggs and Butterwick are also part of the ‘Too Good To Go’ scheme, which connects customers to stores with reduced, surplus food to tackle food waste. Coffee lovers can also head to Bewiched Coffee and claim a 70% discount when they bring their own cup to the store. Plant-based options to reduce meat intake are also high in demand to reduce emissions and the amount of land used for agriculture. To support this, various restaurants at Rushden Lakes offer a variety of vegetarian and vegan options including Wagamama, Lago Lounge, Bills, and Zizzi – providing lots of choice for all the family

For more information about the We Can Do More Campaign and the activities available throughout September, please visit like Rushden Lakes on Facebook or follow on lnstagram and X,. Don’t forget to share your pictures of your memorable visit alongside the hashtag #MyRushdenLakes for the chance to be featured on Rushden Lakes’ social channels!

Rushden Lakes is open Monday – Saturday 08 00 – 78 00 and Sunday 70 00 – 7700. Individual restaurants and store opening times may vary.