Head of College Idea of the Year

Bepop project and forming of the society
Plastic-Free UoB


Sarah Granville and Harriet Noy had the great idea to form a plastic-free society in autumn 2019 with the aim of spreading awareness about the dangers of single-use plastic. Since then they have worked to reduce single-use plastic on campus, held several litter picks and partnered with the Canal & River Trust to clean the Edgbaston canal. They’re building strong relationships with University staff and hold regular meetings discussing their long-term goals, such as reusable cups in campus eateries, bottle refill points and cost-effective eco-friendly alternatives. In January, Plastic-Free launched Bepop, an online platform to sell second-hand clothes to fellow students. The marketplace aims to reduce the societal issues of fast-fashion. Fancy dress nights unintentionally encourage fast-fashion and often students will buy new garments to fit a particular theme. This is often done online and last minute, from sites where clothes are made cheaply and shipped across the globe. Plastic-Free wants to change this while still ensuring students can enjoy fancy dress, without supporting fast-fashion. Bepop is a way for students to purchase clothes quickly, easily and at low cost. Students add a photo of the items they want to sell to Bepop and potential buyers message their interest and arrange the purchase. It completely eliminates the plastic packaging and transport involved with other ways of buying clothes online. It’s also very safe, as it is only between Birmingham students who can meet safely on campus. Within two days of launching the platform it had nearly 4,000 members and this number continues to rise.

From Plastic-Free UoB:

“We are delighted to receive this Award. It means so much to us that we have been recognised in our first year of being a society! When we first thought of Bepop we had no idea how big it would become in such a short space of time, and this award will spread awareness even further! We hope that soon everyone at UoB will be using Bepop and that it will significantly reduce fast fashion at the University.”