Ashford Cloth Nappy Library – supporting parents locally

Entering the world of parenthood is one of life’s biggest joys, but it doesn’t come without its hardships, and Ashford Cloth Nappy Library provides a crutch of support to new parents and guardians in the local area.


Ashford Cloth Nappy Library was set up by Maria Martin to give families the opportunity to try out various cloth nappies before they commit to a purchase, helping to avoid any expensive mistakes as many will already be aware – nappies aren’t cheap.


CommunityAd caught up with Maria to find out a little bit more about how the library started back in June 2016, how it works with local residents and to discuss reusable nappies and whether they might be a viable switch for parents and guardians.


Maria told us: “I started the library because I had been unable to find adequate support locally, and buying nappies online with no idea how they looked, felt and worked was becoming frustrating for me.


“There is a national network of libraries – The UK Nappy Network – filled with experienced nappy librarians and retailers, they were incredibly helpful in guiding me through my first couple of years running the library. I had voiced my frustration on social media and quite a few other local parents echoed my feelings. Some were parents who had also had to navigate the reusable world alone and some were new and expectant parents who wanted to know more.


“The idea of the nappy library is to give families the opportunity to try out various cloth nappies before they commit to a purchase – getting the wrong nappies can be an expensive mistake! I also provide simple nappies on a long-term basis for families who are not in a position to purchase their own straight away. The nappies I lend are generally preloved and used by several families before, but they are thoroughly cleaned at a high temperature before they go out to the next family.


“There are a few myths surrounding cloth nappies and a lot of people assume it is still buckets of pooey water, scrubbing by hand and giant safety pins but that is a little 25 years ago!


“It is so important, now more than ever, to do what we can to reduce our impact on the environment; reusable nappies are one very easy way for families to make a positive change, even if it is part time. It is estimated that only 5% of families use cloth nappies and I aim to tear down the barriers that stop people from using them, one family at a time.”


To seek advice or hire some nappies there are a few ways to contact Maria; the Facebook page ‘Ashford Cloth Nappy Library’ or email [email protected]. You can also visit South East Reusable CIC’s Facebook or give her a ring on her mobile number 07957 402321.

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