An environmentally-friendly food refill store in Letchworth will close for good later today.

Bamboo Turtle has announced that it will close its doors for the last time at 4pm this afternoon (Friday, September 30).

The shop - located in The Arcade - stocked a range of environmentally-sourced foods and household items.

The establishment is run by co-owners Shani Crofton and Amanda Skinner.

Shani told The Comet the reasons for the store's closure: "One word really; economy.

"Money, bills to pay, not having recovered after the pandemic.

"The footfall hasn't recovered after the pandemic and people are spending less money.

"Even if our regulars are coming in, they're spending less money because they're probably more aware of the cost of living crisis."

Shani continued, explaining that the cost of living crisis has affected the amount of money that customers are likely to spend.

She said: "It comes down to pounds, pennies and pence.

"If you are worried about your heating bill, and you have to make choices, refill shopping is perceived to be more expensive.

"We haven't actually increased our prices since the cost of living crisis, because we feel like that will just chase more people away.

"Refill shopping is perceived to be an expensive way of shopping, always has been - I don't know why, but it is.

"People are now more aware of what they are spending their money on I suppose.

"We were always going to be up against the supermarkets, there's no getting away from that."

Asked whether the shop will ever return, perhaps in an online-only capacity, Shani explained that there are large organisations that already sell environmental products online.

She commented: "We've been going for four-and-a-half years now, as a bricks-and-mortar shop.

"When we opened, there were very few zero-waste options on the market online.

"Now there are dedicated online shops where you can get most of what we stock, other than the refill options...

"So, as far as us coming back as an online shop, its probably not our cup of tea.

"We opened the shop because we wanted to be face-to-face with people."