Tis the Future

by Tisbury Community Benefit Society in Tisbury, England, United Kingdom

Tis the Future
We did it
On 17th December 2020 we successfully raised £11,800 with 54 investors in 24 days

Invest now to raise funds for an electric-powered, no-plastic, zero-waste, mobile refill shop for Tisbury and its surrounding villages.

by Tisbury Community Benefit Society in Tisbury, England, United Kingdom

New stretch target

This extra funding will provide us with some working capital to make everything happen a bit quicker.  There are lots of things on our Wishlist such as a fridge on board Tis the Future to enable us to sell fresh local produce and a coffee grinder so our customers can buy local coffee beans and grind them there & then.  Any extra money raised towards our stretch target will enable us to make these exciting additions to the mobile shop a reality.


Tis the Future: Refill, Reuse, Reduce, Reimagine

David Attenborough’s ‘Blue Planet II’ made it very evident that plastic waste is a blight on our planet, our seas, our skies, our land. We are privileged to live in a beautiful place, but how can we keep it that way and reduce our wider impact too?

Tis the Future is a no-plastic, zero-waste, electric-powered, mobile refill shop, community owned and community run.  Based in Tisbury, it will spend much of its time on a timetabled route, taking it round the neighbouring villages, where it will stop for an hour or so for the villagers to come on board and shop, knowing their impact on the environment is as minimal as practically possible.  This is the future.

The essence of a zero-plastic, refill shop is customers bring their own empty containers, so that their transaction generates zero plastic. Tis the Future will start off by selling purely staple, store cupboard ingredients (rice, oats, flour, pulses, pasta, cereals etc) at competitive prices and in an environmentally friendly way.   

All information, and most crucially the timetable for its route one up and running, will be at www.tisthefuture.com.

So Tis the Future is a shop. But also:

  • we are spreading a message: that we must all change the way we shop if we want to reverse the decline of our environment;
  • and that a community can provide its own solutions for the environmental crisis; 
  • and be something that will inspire all generations, from the very young (we hope to open in school car-parks, with agreement of course) to the very old; 
  • and we will provide a comforting and inspiring place of community for the most isolated and elderly in the community (Tis the Future has been fitted out with some super-comfy banquette seating);
  • Tis the Future is a way of connecting the community and providing a hub where people can come together to chat, find out what’s going on and sit and even have a tea or a coffee (we will have a kettle!)

Getting ready to open

Tis the Future is nearly ready. It is currently being re-purposed by a specialist garage in Oxfordshire (it was originally a rubbish collection float in Sussex). We expect to take delivery in a couple of weeks, with a view to being open for business early in the New Year. 

Below are some photos showing you what it looked like when we found the vehicle, the various stages of refurbishment and preparation it has been through, and what it will look like when it's ready.  More photographs and further information can be found at our website www.tisthefuture.com.

As we found it:

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Mid-refurbishment:

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What it will look like once complete:

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But - we still need your help to get us over the line!

We are looking to raise a total of £5,000 which will cover the ‘fitting out’ costs of the shop i.e. those costs which take us from being an empty electric vehicle to a fully functioning mobile refill shop.  These costs include:

  • Interior carpentry
  • The dispensers we will need for the stock
  • The specialist scales and the tills
  • The training we need for using the scales & till
  • The hand sanitisers and PPE
  • The equipment for cleaning down at the end of each day
  • The kettle for making cups of tea for our lovely customers
  • The opening run of stock

Key Questions

How will the vehicle be powered and where will it go?

It will be powered by electricity, plugging in overnight to recharge.  Across the week, it will call in the villages surrounding Tisbury, and in Tisbury itself, on a widely advertised schedule: a bit like an old-fashioned mobile library or ice cream van but shining a light on how we have to live if we want to help save the planet.  

How will the refill shop work?

This is how the zero-plastic refill shopping experience will work for the consumer:

  • Bring with you any containers you would like to use, whether glass jars, Tupperware, old takeaway containers or cleaned out icecream or yogurt tubs.
  • Our expert driver/shop keeper will be an expert in operating a specialised refill scale system which will make weighing and labelling a quick and easy job. 
  • We would also like to have a pool of volunteers in each of the villages the shop visits to help customers and keep the process a smooth & speedy one!

What will you sell?

Initially we will focus on selling the basics in bulk: oats, cereals, pasta, grains, pulses, dried fruit, nuts & seeds, herbs & spices, baking goods, coffee beans etc.  We are keen to stock local produce too and, through this, support local businesses - so get in touch if you would like to see your product on our shelves!

What we think is great about this way of shopping is that you can buy as much or as little you need of any one product which not only reduces the use of unnecessary packaging, but also reduces food wastage.  This is something we can all do to help the push for a better, cleaner planet.

Who will run the business?

We will employ a full time driver/shop keeper/manager assisted by a rota of volunteers from the membership and the communities that the refill shop will serve. (See www.tisthefuture.com/we-are-hiring for the job advert itself.) 

They will be overseen by the Management Committee. The Committee members all serve in an unpaid voluntary capacity and is made up of the initial volunteers who set up the Tisbury CBS.  A Steering Group has also been established with a broad range of relevant skills and experience, including retail, marketing, governance, surveying, accountancy, hospitality, social business, community projects and environmental expertise. 

By subscribing for shares issued by the society in this share offer you will become a Member of it (or remain as one if you are a Member already) and thus co-owner of the society and its assets. 

We passionately believe in shared ownership and want to create a business which benefits everyone.  All investors in this project will become a Member of the Tisbury Community Benefit Society and, no matter what they invest (minimum investment £50), will share equal voting rights with all other Members.

A copy of our rules and other supporting documents are available at the bottom of our Crowdfunder page and also by writing to [email protected]

Please see our Share Offer Document below for details on how a Community Share Offer works, and more information about your investment.

But before you go, you should know...

We’ve received confirmation from HMRC that this share issue is eligible for Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) tax relief.  This means that you can claim 50% of the value of whatever you invest back against your income tax due to HMRC.  

For more information on this, please see our Share Offer Document below.

Levels of Investment

£100 or more

£100 Investment

As well as a big thank you from us you will automatically become a Member of the Tisbury Community Benefit Society (every Member will have one vote, no matter what they invest) and co-owner of Tis the Future. You will receive annual interest on your investment when performance allows. See our Share Offer Document at the bottom of this page for more information.

£50 or more

£50 Investment

As well as a big thank you from us you will automatically become a Member of the Tisbury Community Benefit Society (every Member will have one vote) and co-owner of Tis the Future. You will receive annual interest on your investment when performance allows. See our Share Offer Document at the bottom of this page for more information.

£250 or more

£250 Investment

As well as a big thank you from us you will automatically become a Member of the Tisbury Community Benefit Society (every Member will have one vote, no matter what they invest) and co-owner of Tis the Future. You will receive annual interest on your investment when performance allows. See our Share Offer Document at the bottom of this page for more information.

£500 or more

£500 Investment

As well as a big thank you from us you will automatically become a Member of the Tisbury Community Benefit Society (every Member will have one vote, no matter what they invest) and co-owner of Tis the Future. You will receive annual interest on your investment when performance allows. See our Share Offer Document at the bottom of this page for more information.

£1,000 or more

£1000

As well as a big thank you from us you will automatically become a Member of the Tisbury Community Benefit Society (every Member will have one vote, no matter what they invest) and co-owner of Tis the Future. You will receive annual interest on your investment when performance allows. See our Share Offer Document at the bottom of this page for more information.

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