PLASTIC-free, zero-waste shop The Blue Pantry in Wellington town centre is soon to shut its doors for the last time.

The shop, run by Wellington husband and wife team Gary and Kate Todd for nearly six years, is closing down when its lease runs out in the next few weeks.

Mr and Mrs Todd, who lived in Howard Road, were inspired to open the business in Fore Street after visiting similar shops in Totnes, Devon.

Now, the couple have announced they will not be renewing the lease on the retail premises, which is in a grade two listed building with a maisonette and a one-bedroom flat on the upper floors.

Wellington's plastic-free shop The Blue Pantry is closing soon.
Wellington's plastic-free shop The Blue Pantry is closing soon. ( )

Mr Todd was a mental health services manager for 30 years before the grocery venture, with his last role working in the Wellesley Hospital, Chelston.

He said: “We have had ups and downs aplenty, but through it all we have had amazing, loyal customers who have supported us throughout.

“It is with sadness therefore, that we are sharing the news we will not be renewing our lease for a further period and The Blue Pantry will be closing its doors in the coming weeks.

“This has been a difficult decision but we are excited for new opportunities and challenges to come.

“Thank you to everyone who believed in us, to friends and family, without whom we would never have opened.

“Thank you for being part of something we are so proud to have been involved in.”

The Blue Pantry sold dried goods such as pasta, rice, flour, beans, peas, spices, and fruit, and encouraged customers to refill their own containers in order to reduce single use plastics.

Mr Todd said customers who had bought refillable SESI cleaning products alone, had saved ‘an amazing’ 30,735 single use packages.

The freehold of the building was put up for sale two years ago at a price of £500,000, and now property agents Greenslade Taylor Hunt is advertising the lease of the retail shop for £15,000 a year.

The ground floor includes an office, a communal kitchenette area, and 729 sq ft sales space.