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Wexford Festival Opera and the Environmental Protection Agency celebrated EPA Green Night

EPA Green Night Winner
Wexford Festival Opera and the Environmental Protection Agency celebrated EPA Green Night on Friday 28 October by promoting the message of sustainable fashion This year, as part of the Festival's partnership with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Wexford Festival Opera and the EPA encouraged opera goers to make sustainable fashion choices when choosing their evening outfits. This was to highlight the idea of a circular economy and to show that the way we shop and the choices we make daily can make a big difference to our environment.

Whether it's borrowing a bow-tie from a family member, raiding your wardrobe for that beautiful dress you wore many years ago, or finding the perfect pair of opera gloves in your local charity or vintage shop - every small change helps.

As part of the initiative, the Festival called on their audience across social media to share the sustainable outfit or outfit items they would wear to #EPAGreenNight to be in with a chance to win tickets to last night’s opera. After considering many entries, the EPA and Wexford Festival Opera selected an entry from Ann O’Gorman as the competition winner. Ann shared her story of two sustainable items she would wear as part of her outfit.

Firstly, a handmade woollen cape her mother made almost 60 years ago, the material of which was bought from Healy Collins drapery store on South Main St. Wexford. Pairing the cape with a dress handed down to her by her cousin over 15 years ago. Both items of clothing truly represent the sustainable message of #EPAGreenNight and the Festival was delighted to welcome Ann and her guest to join the EPA last-night at Wexford Festival Opera to enjoy one of the Festival’s main stage productions, Armida.

Together with our competition winner many members of the opera audience made sustainable choices in the outfits they wore and helped the Festival spread the message of sustainable fashion.

Niamh Hatchell from the EPA Communications Team , , “We want to remind people that even small changes help in the care and protection of our environment. This year, by promoting sustainable fashion at Wexford Festival Opera, we hope to inform people about the importance of a circular economy, and encourage them to take responsibility in their own lives and to consider their personal choices.

We know that there are real opportunities presented by taking a more sustainable approach to fashion. An estimated 40,000 tonnes of clothing end up in household bins in Ireland every year. If we move away from fast fashion and buy clothes that last, if we reuse what we have or buy second hand we can reduce this impact on the environment dramatically.”

The EPA’s headquarters is based in Johnstown Castle Estate, Wexford and the Agency has been part of the local community for the last 25 years. It has worked with and supported Wexford Festival Opera for many years through various EPA-led initiatives to raise awareness on a variety of environmental issues.

Photo Patrick Browne