Community group rolls out a fantastic plastic free initiative

11 January 2018

Winchelsea, Anglesea and Lorne residents will receive free reusable shopping bags thanks to a partnership between Plastic Free Winchelsea and Bendigo Bank.

About 1,700 reusable jute shopping bags will be available across the three townships in February 2018. The initiative will support the local IGA supermarket’s commitment to going plastic bag free in the New Year.

According to Planet Ark, 10 million plastic bags are used daily in Australia, with 7,000 thrown away every minute. Most of these are not recycled, and some end up causing damage to waterways and wildlife.

Winchelsea Ward Councillor Carol McGregor praised Plastic Free Winchelsea and Bendigo Bank for their environmental leadership.

“Their vision of a community without plastic litter is to be applauded,” Cr McGregor said.

“It’s great to see that students at Winchelsea Primary School will be some of the first to receive bags for their families through an activity at the school.

“It’s now up to all of us to be part of the solution by remembering reusable bags each time we shop, and choosing to avoid plastic ones even if they’re available.”

Plastic Free Winchelsea’s Anne Mulvey said the jute bags will bear a logo designed by Surf Coast Shire Council, featuring the message ‘Bring Your Own reusable bags, cups and bottles’.

“It will remind everyone to do what they can to love our environment by refusing single use plastic items,” Anne said.

Bendigo Bank’s Rob Cameron – who is Business Development Manager of Anglesea and Winchelsea and District Community Bank – said the local branches were thrilled to be involved in the project.

“The $5000 we have invested will certainly help make our Surf Coast and hinterland region a cleaner and safer place,” Mr Cameron said.

“We are delighted to be launching this through the primary school, as we see the youth of today being the real drivers for change in our society on these key environmental issues.”

About Plastic Free Winchelsea
Plastic Free Winchelsea was founded in early 2017. Inspired by what other Surf Coast townships have achieved, the group aims to work with the Winchelsea community to eliminate single use plastic bags. It hopes to extend this to disposable coffee cups, drinking straws and water bottles.

The group welcomes others with an interest to join them. Contact Anne via or 0447 513 075. The group can also be found on Facebook by searching ‘Plastic Free Winchelsea’.