You may have seen a couple of girls whizzing around London Fields in an electric milk float (remember them?) crammed with flour, tins and laundry liquid. They are Ella and Martha and that is the Top Up Truck, backed by Re:Store in Hackney Downs. It’s basically a very cute zero-waste shop on wheels, selling grains, pulses, teas and household products like loo roll. it’s a great plastic-free solution, especially for all the heavies that you don’t want to lug back from a shop on foot or by bike.
You put your order in before Thursday via the website, then take your containers out and refill them when the milk float rocks up outside your door, as local residents stream from their houses clutching string bags and wicker baskets like something out of ‘Call the Midwife’. So it’s not only good for the environment, you get to have a bit of chat and community fun time in the open air while you and your neighbours are hovering to pick up your raw chocolate raisins or find out what this is and how to sign up.
Ella is currently crowdfunding to increase the capacity of the Top Up Truck by adding some shelves to it (it’s a single-decker currently). Donate, and you might win a ride on the truck, some natural wine or some reiki (obviously). The whole thing is clearly a great idea and the sort of thing that makes daily life in London just that little bit more bearable.