Horsham Cloth Nappy Library: Changing Nappies Changing Lives

Horsham Cloth Nappy Library: Changing Nappies Changing Lives

We’re Lucy and Sarah, local mums who loved cloth nappies for our babies so much that we’re now running the Horsham Cloth Nappy Library to support other families! As one of our favourite nappy retailers says, “You can change the world, – one nappy change at a time.”

Most people now recognise the damage single use plastics cause, and we’re making changes.  Let’s now extend our thinking to other single-use products!

A high-impact eco-swap is to switch away from single use to reusable cloth nappies and wipes. It may conjure images of babies in bulky white with huge pins, however reusable nappies have come a long way in recent years with a large variety of styles, beautiful prints and natural fibres such as bamboo, cotton and hemp on the market. Cloth nappies have seen a rise in popularity with parents citing environmental impact, lower costs, reduced nappy rash, comfort and better containment as the main reasons for choosing them over throw-away products.

Since the 1970s most parents have used convenient disposable nappies, and today, 95% still do.  However, they contain plastics and wood pulp; their production uses huge volumes of water; a baby will require around 4,000 nappies over 2.5 years. (nearly 4 million nappies across the UK every year) Over 80 percent of these then go into landfill, where they take on average 500 years to decompose, and the rest are incinerated giving rise to highly toxic pollutants.

Apart from the environmental impact, disposables cost on average £400 per child per year, plus the cost of wipes and nappy sacks. Though the initial cost of cloth nappies may be in the region of £500 for a full kit, it will last for years, and can be used for multiple children. Birth-to-Potty nappies even grow with your child thanks to their clever design! There is a healthy secondhand market allowing parents to sell nappies in good condition once their children are potty trained.

We are so spoilt for choice of cloth nappy, that finding the right type for your baby can feel a little overwhelming. That’s where The Horsham Cloth Nappy Library can help. We’re a not-for-profit organisation serving Horsham and surroundings.

We loan cloth nappy kits for a small fee for newborns and babies from 3 months to potty training. Our kits hold approximately 25 nappies, wipes and accessories from the most popular brands, allowing parents to figure out what suits their child. We provide information booklets with the nappy kits and additional support through virtual meetings. Feedback on our service is overwhelmingly positive with over 90% of parents who have used a kit going on to use cloth nappies. You can find us on Facebook and we take bookings through messenger.

We’re excited to be at the Sussex Green Hub at the United Reform Church on March 30th 2024 between 10am and 3pm to showcase our nappy kits and chat about all things nappy related. We look forward to seeing you there!

by Lucy Robinson and Sarah Weston

Horsham Cloth Nappy Library