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Plan A Shwopping

Ordinary clothes
made extraordinary

The M&S clothes recycling initiative

What it’s about

Ordinary clothes made extraordinary

Do something extraordinary
in 15 seconds

Every item you place your old clothes (they don't have to be from M&S) in one of our Shwop boxes you help to reduce poverty. Your Shwopped items are resold, reused or recycled and allow Oxfam to fund all sorts of vital projects around the world.

Incredibly, since 2008 the M&S and Oxfam Shwopping partnership has collected over 20 million items, worth an estimated £16 million for Oxfam’s work.

So next time you’re clearing a space in your wardrobe, drop any unwanted clothes into your bag and drop them off in a Shwop box at your nearest M&S. It's so easy. Shwopping. Ordinary clothes made extraordinary.

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Photo of a Sparks card

Shwop for Sparks!

Did you know that you can collect 50 sparks every
time you Shwop? Just show your Shwopping at the
till before dropping it in the Shwop bin – the more
sparks you collect, the more benefits you unlock

Top shwopping faqs

  • Shwopping is about bringing an unwanted item of clothing into an M&S store (even if it’s not from M&S) each time you come to buy something new. You can put your unwanted items into a ‘Shwop Drop’ box (you’ll find these by the tills in most M&S stores). All clothing goes to our partners Oxfam and they'll either resell it in one of their shops or on the Oxfam Online Shop, sell it to be reused in different countries around the world, or recycle the fibres to make new material (which can be used by businesses like M&S, for example, as mattress filling). Absolutely nothing goes to landfill and Oxfam will use the money raised to help end extreme poverty around the world.

  • You can Shwop at most M&S stores, including M&S Outlets, and at Oxfam stores.

  • Shwopping is now a permanent fixture in our stores, so any time your local store is open, you can Shwop your unwanted clothes.

  • You can Shwop any item of clothing (even if it’s damaged) from any retailer, including shoes, handbags, jewellery, belts, hats, scarves and bras. You can also Shwop soft furnishings (bed linen, towels, cushions, curtains, throws, aprons, tablecloths and napkins). Remember, even if IT can’t be sold on, the fibres may be perfect for recycling. You can choose to Shwop a single item or multiple items.

  • All clothes Shwopped at M&S are given to Oxfam. Oxfam then:
    1. Resell them in their shops or online to raise life changing funds
    2. Reuse them in different countries around the world
    3. Recycle them into new fabrics with nothing going to landfill
    Not a stitch is wasted – every penny raised helps fight poverty around the world.

  • Approximately 500,000 tonnes or 1 billion items of clothing are sent to landfill each year – that’s 114,000 items per hour. Neither the planet’s landfill sites, nor its resources, are infinite and we know that placing unwanted clothing items into the bin (and therefore into landfill) when they could be recycled or re-used – is not sustainable. We hope this project will help to see a move away from ‘disposable’ fashion where we throw away clothes when we’ve had enough of them.

  • • No, you can just bring your items in and drop it in the Shwop Drop box.

  • • We know that there are still approximately 114,000 garments thrown away in the UK every hour so we want to do even more to encourage and help our staff and customers recycle unwanted clothes rather than throw them away. Working in partnership with Oxfam we believe Shwopping will help increase the volume of unwanted clothes that are recycled and reduce the volume thrown away. We want to turn the tide on waste and start the journey towards making our fashion business truly sustainable. Our eventual aim is to recycle as many clothes as we sell – that’s hundreds of millions of items each year! This also involves Plan A, which is M&S’s environmental and ethical programme that aims to make M&S the world’s most sustainable major retailer by 2020. Through Plan A, we are working with our customers and our suppliers to combat climate change, reduce waste, use sustainable raw materials, trade ethically, and help our customers to lead healthier lifestyles. As part of Plan A, M&S has committed to help customers recycle over 50 million items of clothing by 2020.

  • We are delighted to be working with Joanna Lumley on the Shwopping initiative. Joanna is a much loved personality in the UK and also a hugely respected campaigner. Our customers have told us how much they like her and respect the campaign work she has done. We are proud she is working with us in helping change the way customers do their shopping forever.

  • We hope as many of our customers as possible will start Shwopping as your participation will help give old clothes a future, clearing your wardrobe space while reducing the amount of items thrown into UK landfill. We hope that together we can drive a clothes recycling revolution that will see Shwopping become the norm. We all have the power here to become part of the solution. If you have a Sparks card, we’ll give you 50 sparks every time you Shwop – just show your Shwopping and your Sparks card at the till. You can also Shwop at Oxfam stores – if you have an item of M&S clothing in your Shwopping Oxfam will give you a £5 M&S clothing and home voucher to spend in store.