What on earth is Marks and Spencer thinking about with its new advert for shwopping? There I was, in the middle of watching some Sunday night rubbish on the box, when up popped Joanna Lumley urging us all to shwop our clothes. And yes, that is their spelling.
Basically, the premise is that when shopping at M&S, we drop off our old or unwanted items of clothing and M&S will take them to Oxfam for us.
They will then be reused, resold or recycled through the charity.
But put your hand up if you don’t already get a charity bag through your door every two months or so, for clothes to be picked up and taken away by a local charity?
Or if your kids’ school doesn’t do textile collections, or if you don’t use the recycling bank for clothes that’s next to the bottle bank, or even if you don’t just bung a bag of clothes into your car and pop them down to the nearest charity shop.
I bet there aren’t many people left who still have both hands down.
Shwopping feels like a desperate ploy to get more of us to go into M&S stores where we will – the company hopes – be inspired to purchase more items of clothing.
Where’s the swop element of shwop in that then? Oh yes, we swop our cash for new clothes.
It’s really irked me. So I checked out the website blurb and read about all the apps you can get and the points you can earn and blah blah blah.
Somewhere in the depths, I found out that approximately 500,000 tonnes of clothes are sent to landfill each year, presumably in the UK.
So there is a something vaguely philanthropic behind all this. But still, did M&S have to come up with such a daft word as shwopping?
Surely it makes more sense for us all to actually go and drop off our unwanted textiles at any of our local charity shops.
That way we can support them with donations and we can also buy more stuff while we are there, therefore doubling our support.
So M&S, I say stick to selling knickers and stop making me get mine all in a twist.