PLASTIC Free Eastbourne is demanding change at Morrisons supermarket.

It has written this open letter: “I represent Plastic Free Eastbourne. We intend eliminating single-use plastics from our town by 2030. One extreme example is balloons.

I notice from several friends and colleagues that your Eastbourne store is selling these from a special high profile stall as well as from each of your checkouts. I am told that they are selling well. I am also told by some of your staff that they are upset about this.

I understand that you are powerless to do anything about this unless your Head Office authorises a stop. This is an appalling state of affairs.

There are many alternatives which our campaign is promoting this month ~ indeed it is the Monthly Challenge for December. You will not need me to remind you of the horrors caused by balloons in the environment after they have been used.

Additionally, their contribution to global heating and climate change is massive.In Eastbourne our target is to achieve Carbon Neutrality by 2030. We intend achieving this.

However, your contribution towards this goal is to act as a barrier. I am particularly concerned about your stance because you have somehow managed to gain this accolade: “Morrisons named UK’s most environmentally responsible retailer.”You have an even bigger responsibility than most because of this status. I urge you to make every effort to reverse your devastating policy in this matter. If you want me to become further involved, I am prepared to travel anywhere to help to remedy this dilemma you find yourselves in.

We are encouraging shoppers as part of our campaign to choose to shop in ethical and eco-aware stores. You will find that your flaunting these items so visibly will eventually backfire. People are already “voting with their feet”.

My approach is currently one of persuading and campaigning in a positive paradigm. It is going to be hard for you in this instance but I need a most urgent response and swift removal of your balloon selling.

Time here is of the essence.

If you wish to discuss any of the content of this email by phone [number given].

Finally, I will tell you that you are not the only retailer with whom I have been in discussion about balloons. The Beacon Centre has had a policy that no store can display balloons for a good year now. A franchise for a national chain in Terminus Road has stopped giving out balloons for over a year now.

There are many other examples too. Society is changing and trying to make a difference. Please do not let your own company have to be “dragged, crying and screaming” to catch up.I look forward to your response.

I am Bcc’ing several Eastbourne leaders so that they can become aware of your strategy with the intention that they might begin to persuade you too from their position.

Best wishes,Oliver SternoCommunity Leader ~ Plastic Free Eastbourne.”