Before we set off to Scapa fest I admit I had hardly researched exactly what this festival was about. I knew it was a yoga festival with a zero waste market, but it was so much more than that!
It was set in a stunning estate on the banks of Lock Fyne amongst ancient mature trees, bluebells as far as the eye could see and wonderfully colourful flowering bushes and trees everywhere.
Activities included foraging, tracking, hill walking, canoeing, paddle boarding, conservation talks, herbalist, yoga, meditation, music, storytelling, trail running, boat making, craft skills, hula hooping and more! It was a real celebration of getting back to nature and looking after yourself, having fun and enjoying time with people who never really felt like strangers. All of that created an incredible vibe which I could ramble on about for hours but I’m going to focus on the stand out thing for me.
This was a ZERO WASTE FESTIVAL!
I would never really have dreamed of such a thing happening but the wonderful organiser boldly declared it was zero waste and so it was!
But what did that mean?
Anything you bring, you take back home again, your own cutlery and crockery was a must and there were NO BINS! The food stall used your dishes to serve their food and washing facilities were close by where you could clean up afterwards. The organiser had even created natural washing liquid using soap nuts. There was one recycling bin simply for the cans the food stall sold – and that was it! Everything else was your own responsibility.
There were other lovely little touches too, like upcycled food cans with fresh herbs growing and homemade upcycled bunting.
And how did it work?
I was stunned at the difference to the general atmosphere and vibe, the place was immaculate! If you weren’t eating you had your utensils with you so there was absolutely nothing lying around and no waste anywhere.
It was beautiful, it felt so right, so clean and so natural!
It was an AHA moment! This works – this is the way we should be living.
So where did ecobricks fit in?
We ran a stall to introduce people to ecobricks who were attending the festival. We also offered to take peoples plastic to brick – as long as it was clean and dry of course!
Many people came and sat with us bricking in the sun, and chatting about the plastic in their lives, what that meant and how they deal with it. The children were all amazing and loved getting some hands on experience of bricking.
We had a few visitors already bricking but who had started on the wrong foot and been making “bad bricks.” They were delighted to get their hands on a “real” brick and see some practical information on how to actually achieve the minimum required density.
As you can imagine with a crowd that were already so open to zero waste – ecobricks were seen as a very sensible solution for the plastic which was unavoidable. Many attendees were also excited about the practical applications and thinking ahead to what could be built.
A common question of the festival and ecobricks in general was “where will recycle my bricks when I’m finished”. So it was good to chat to people about why the best solution is to find a use for them yourself! As a family it would take us almost a year to product enough plastic to create one stool – who doesn’t have room for a stool in their house?! People were very receptive to the idea that ecorbicks means taking personal responsibility for the plastic you bring into your life and were happy to think of their own / local uses for completed bricks.
Lots of exciting conversations took place with like minded people attracted to the stall who were doing their own fabulous initiatives and whom I hope we can collaborate with in the future!
We did have some time for fun too!
We managed to squeeze in some yoga sessions, a little hula hopping action and some campfire stories and music at night too.
All in all what a wonderful experience! We were delighted to be part of Scapa Fest and see zero waste working so beautifully in practice. What an amazing a brave move which paid off beautifully. Thank you to Clemence for inviting us to this inspired event!
Thank you Scapa for having us – we will be back!