Pep&Co will use the money raised from compulsory carrier bag levies to create high street support funds, as it marks the halfway point in its ‘50 stores in 50 days’ retail rollout.
At the launch of the value chain’s 25th and 26th stores in Chelmsley Wood and Kirkcaldy today, managing director Adrian Mountford said the firm will set up small community Pep Groups to suggest where the funds can best be used when the carrier bag charges are introduced.
Stores in Wales (Bridgend, Cwmbran and Newport) and Scotland (Falkirk, Glenrothes, Irvine and Kirkcaldy), where carrier bag charging is already in operation, will be the first to set up groups to direct money into projects that support high streets in those towns.
Mountford said: “No one knows these high streets better than the people who live and work there, so the Pep Groups will consist of local people who understand the causes that can really help our towns.”
Based on its projections, Pep&Co expects to generate between £800 and £1,000 every year from each store to spend on projects in its 50 towns.
Mountford said the company could also join forces with other retailers in the towns to create a larger pool of funds to support local high streets.