Plastic-free shop shuts after pandemic struggle

The Refill Pantry in St Albans will close on Saturday May 7 at the end of the day.

The Refill Pantry in St Albans will close on Saturday May 7 at the end of the day. - Credit: The Refill Pantry

A St Albans business owner has expressed her sadness at having to close her city centre store.

The zero waste plastic shop The Refill Pantry opened in London Road in June 2018 but will not be reaching its fourth birthday.

Regular customers would come back again and again with their own containers to refill food, laundry liquid, shampoo  and avoid throwing bottles into landfill.

The Covid pandemic severely affected the business and after two years of lowered footfall the decision has been made to close the shop. However it is not the end of refills in St Albans as their branch at Carpenter’s Farm Shop is there to stay. 

Owner Celina Mendoza said: “I am sad to say that due to a rent rise and severely reduced footfall since the start of the pandemic we are no longer able to keep our London Road shop open. This is a real disappointment to me as it was the first one we opened four years ago.

"However I am pleased that we will continue to offer the same refills at our shop within Carpenter’s Farm Shop in Sandridge and our new one in Berkhamsted."

Their last day of trading at London Road will be Saturday May 7.