Tag Archives: clean air for london

What can we do to make London air cleaner for our children?

As a London cyclist I am very aware of air quality.  So when I set up Nappy Ever After’s nappy laundry service in 2003 I was very keen to find out whether we could do our collections and deliveries without tailpipe emissions.  I attached a trailer to the back of my road bike to do the first delivery and collection.

Since then we’ve acquired a bike with a motor.  We’ve tried an electric van and a vehicle with a diesel engine.  We’re back doing our deliveries by cargo bike with batteries charged on Good Energy – because it’s far more efficient.

It’s great to know our nappy laundry service deliveries are not contributing to air pollution.  However London’s air is bad and it’s getting worse.  Yes, we now have a mayor who understands the urgency (unlike Boris) and is going to do something immediately – replacing diesel taxis with cleaner taxis and putting less polluting buses on routes with the worst air quality.

But what can we do?  Afterall,  we are the traffic.

1   When you buy on the internet choose companies that don’t deliver to your door but drop off at collection points within a mile of your home.  This reduces diesel emissions in your street and is being considerate to others. (To be honest this is something we have not organised yet – although where possible we deliver by bike.)

2  Support more space for cycling.  Segregated cycling lanes are important to increase the number of people cycling.  They encourage people who are nervous of cycling in traffic to have a go.  This is especially important if you want to carry children on your bike or have your children cycling,  with you or independently.

3  Cycle with your kids.  Tomorrow, Sunday 5 March sees the launch of the Family Cycling Library.  This is a great initiative to help parents experiment and find out which bike is right for them and their children.

4  Ditch your car – if you are one of the few Londoners who still own one.  You are wasting money.  You will save money and stress by not owning one.  Take taxis and join a car club so you can hire the right vehicle for your journey when you need it.  If you think that’s more expensive than owning one, do the maths!

Most importantly have fun!  Being on two (or three) wheels is one of life’s pleasures!  We need to work to make it safer so more parents feel confident to ride with their babies (and kids) on bikes as is the norm in Amsterdam.





No delivery charges when you Click & Collect!

After much thought, we have decided to stop  postal/courier delivery services from our on-line shop.  After 3 years of trying to deliver a service that is often excellent but too often disappointing, causing stress, and expense and wasting everyone’s time, we have realised that we can’t deliver a service that is cost-effective and meets customer expectations.

As we have a shop based in London, within a 5 minute walk of Euston, Kings Cross and St Pancras stations (we probably have the best public transport links in Europe,) we’re hoping more of you will Click& Collect.  Look on Streetmap. These days you don’t even have to walk along the Euston Road from any of these 3 stations.   Often partners, friends or neighbours pick up on-line orders for our customers and this works really well.  Although our ‘shop’ hours are restricted (Tuesdays 2-6pm, Wed 9am-4pm) we are often here doing admin.  Just call or email to arrange.

We also like meeting you – and your babies!  Running a real nappy business and shop is not easy.  It’s always been meeting our customers that’s made it enjoyable and given us the will to continue.  Plus knowledge and experience gets shared.  It’s good!

You can also pick up from Hackney City Farm on the second Wednesday evening of the month when we run nappy info sessions.  From March (or earlier if there’s demand) we will be running real nappy sessions at Mother’s Hub, E17 so you can collect orders from us there.   It’s possible we could arrange other collection points, such as Children’s Centres that are open during the day.  Let us know if you have suggestions that work for you.

We understand some of you can’t get out.  If you live in Hackney, Haringey, Islington, Tower Hamlets, Camden or Waltham Forest we may be able to deliver (when we’re doing the laundry round).  Call or drop us an email to ask.

If you really want an order sent to you phone or email. We may be able to send by courier but we just need to to make it clear, we are not Amazon!

This is a quality of life issue.  We know that just-in-time deliveries and repeated missed deliveries are an environmental issue, especially for London air quality.  We don’t want to be contributing to that problem.

What we also  want to do is get rid of the diesel vehicle we use for our laundry service and get our electric freight bike out of the shop window and back on the road.  Any suggestions of grants available?   We have some fund-raisers planned so please look out for those and help publicise (we’re running them in Climate Week – 3-9 March 2014).  We need about £2,000 for new batteries and a charger to make this happen.  If it reduces costs (we think it will) we’ll be able to bring down the weekly laundry service charge.  So a better way to do business.