We grew up in Selsey Bill, surrounded by the sea, swimming after school with our Grandma and marvelling over the slippery kelp that found its way to the shore. Seaweed with all of its lovely shapes and natural patterns has also always been an inspiration for design and pattern for us too.
When we discovered that seaweed plays a crucial role in the ocean's ability to absorb greenhouse gases and that seaweed is better at absorbing CO2 emissions than trees (yes really!), we jumped in our metaphorical boat to see how we could get involved. Not only is seaweed good for the planet, but it’s also super important to the seabed for creatures to live and feed.
We were saddened to learn that a shocking 97% of our beloved seabed along the South Coast has been destroyed over the last few decades by fishing practices.
A campaign to restore a large underwater kelp forest off the West Sussex Coast has been helped by an agreement to ban trawler fishing in a 117 sq mile area.
The Sussex Seabed Restoration Project, founded by the inspiring Steve Allnutt, is working hard to put the kelp back where it should be; between Selsey Bill and Brighton on the south coast.
Steve recently gave up his job with the NHS to focus on his Sussex Seabed Restoration Project on a full-time basis. Based out of his garage with funding raised through a crowdfunding scheme and donations from other organisations such as Fat Face his project has garnered coverage from local and national news as well as support from local restaurants who have contributed oyster shells for the kelp to grow on.
Steve hopes that ‘Sussex is the beginning of a massive domino effect across the rest of the UK. I’ve seen for myself how quickly the kelp and other marine life can bounce back when its left alone by trawlers. Whilst it’s really encouraging it’s also devastating to think of the destruction that’s still happening to the rest of the UK’s oceans and marine life’.
When we met Steve and listened to his story about the passionate work he has been doing, we knew we needed to get involved and support his community interest project.
Our support comes in a number of ways, with a kick-off donation and then by contributing 1% on a monthly basis from the sales of products in our Selsey, Brighton and Sea Green 100% Linen ranges.
All our staff live along the south coast, and by volunteering our time to support Steve’s project too we’re learning about the importance of his project not only from a local perspective but in relation to the planet too.
Thanks for listening
Molly & Harriet
All image credits go to Nick Pope Media @nickpopemedia