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John Lewis expands fashion buyback trial

By Danielle Wightman-Stone

17 Mar 2020

Fashion

Department store John Lewis has announced that it is expanding its fashion buyback service, following the successful pilot in its Oxford store.

The initiative, announced in October 2019, is aimed at addressing the increasing volumes of clothing being sent to landfill and allows customers to “responsibly pass” on unwanted clothes.

The retailer is now expanding the buyback clothing pilot to five more John Lewis shops in Southampton, Birmingham, Cheadle, Cambridge and Bluewater, and one Waitrose shop, in Cheadle Hulme.

The trial in Oxford was originally planned to last for six weeks but has been extended “indefinitely,” explained John Lewis in a statement.

The shops taking part in the trial will accept all preloved items from any womenswear and menswear brands stocked at John Lewis and Partners. To take part, all customers just need to show their ‘myJohn Lewis’ or ‘myWaitrose’ card or sign up on the spot for a loyalty card for free. Customers will receive 3 pounds per item, up to a maximum of three pieces of clothing, off a purchase made that day.

Milly Cunningham, partner and senior sustainability manager at John Lewis said: “We had a great response from customers in Oxford so we want to test this service in other areas of the country and in our sister company Waitrose.

“We feel we have a responsibility to make it easy for our customers to ensure the products they buy from us have a long life after they no longer have use for them. We guarantee that none of the items we buyback will end up in landfill.”

John Lewis expands scheme to combat clothing waste to five more stores and one Waitrose store

With an estimated 300,000 tonnes of clothing sent to landfill in the UK each year, through this trial John Lewis and Partners guarantees that all clothes brought in will be mended or reworked into a new item, resold, or recycled into new products.

John Lewis and Partners also operates a ‘BeautyCycle’ service that allows customers to recycle beauty product packaging. This initiative was introduced to 36 shops across the UK at the end of last year and has so far diverted over 80,000 items of packaging from landfill. Customers who bring back five empty beauty items or more are given 5 pounds off any beauty purchase made that day.

This is the latest initiative from John Lewis, Earlier this month the retailer launched its first-ever above-the-line marketing campaign to advertise its spring/summer season on TV. The product-focused advertising campaign, named ‘Spring: we’ll help you style it’ focuses on the “very best of the department store’s offering” covering home, fashion, and for the first time in its TV campaign, beauty, with the aim of bringing to life the retailer’s “viewpoint for the season across all categories”.

John Lewis and Partners operates 50 shops across the UK, 36 department stores, 12 John Lewis at home and shops at St Pancras International and Heathrow Terminal 2, as well as Johnlewis.com.

Image: courtesy of John Lewis and Partners