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Come and see us at Sparks Bristol – our first retail venture!

Baby Bank Network Bristol co-founders Becky (left) & Eva (right) on opening day

On Saturday 13th May, Sparks Bristol opened its doors for the first time – and we are so excited to be one of the many charities involved. 

Sparks Bristol is based in the former M&S building in Broadmead, and is a unique and innovative hub of sustainability, creativity and education. With ethical living at its heart, Sparks Bristol is a ‘vibrant, positive venue where local people and visitors can shop, recycle, and explore what a greener, fairer and creative future could look like’.

It is the perfect place for us to launch our first retail venue, not just because of its community focus, but because of our shared values around reusing and recycling items that would otherwise go to landfill.

Based in the Department of Fashion, Baby Bank Network Bristol is selling good quality, pre-loved essentials for little ones aged 0-5 as well as a range of fashionable maternity outfits for Mum’s-to-be. Items have all been kindly donated, and visitors can rummage the rails to find: 

  • Eye-catching kids’ outfits – perfect for a summer wardrobe update.
  • Colourful and creative fancy dress outfits – get ahead for the next World Book Day!
  • Sleeping bags and slings – every little one deserves a comfy and safe place to sleep
  • An array of books – to get those imaginations going.
  • A selection of toys – to keep little minds and bodies active.

Profits are funneled back into Baby Bank Network Bristol to help us continue our core work supporting Bristol families in need. 

In our first week we sold 191 items, raising £427 which would enable us to help 5 families.

Co-founder Becky Gilbert said: “We worked hard to get this initiative up and running and are incredibly proud of what we have achieved so far. We have harbored ambitions to extend our reach and get more involved in the Bristol community for a while, and Sparks Bristol came along at just the right time.

“Times are tough for many families at the moment, and the demand for our services is increasing as more and more people are being pushed towards poverty. Initiatives like Sparks Bristol allow us to generate additional revenue so we can help as many families as possible who need it.” 

Beth Nicklinson was one of our first customers and told us that she thought the initiative was impressive. Beth continued: “Sparks Bristol is such a great idea, and it is wonderful to see Baby Bank Network Bristol in the community. I picked up a few outfits and some books for my daughter and will donate them back to Baby Bank Network Bristol when she has outgrown them. It is wonderful that there is another way people can support this great charity – so get down to Sparks Bristol and get spending!”

Sparks has a range of different departments, including:

  • The Department of Gifts: Mila Plants has a range of beautiful gifts – and of course plants! – on offer for any occasion.
  • The Department of Food & Drink: Mila Store has set up a delicious local and ethical food shop, where you can pick up some fresh produce alongside a great cup of coffee.
  • Department of Reuse & Resources: With upcycled items for sale from Emmaus as well as a cool exhibition and a repair café, there is always something interesting to see here.
  • The Travel Agency: A one-stop shop of information about sustainable travel initiatives, The First Bus cab is a huge hit with the youngsters, who can jump up front and pretend to drive!
  • The Department of Fashion: Alongside Baby Bank Network Bristol, there is even more reworked, preloved and vintage clothing on offer for all your fashion needs.

Baby Bank Network Bristol is currently looking for volunteers to help staff its shop, so if you can commit to a few hours a week, then please read the role description for further details. 

Fashion department retail area opening times are:

  • Wednesday to Saturday 11am – 6pm
  • Sunday 11am – 5pm

How you can get involved

We need your help to make our new shop a success, please support by:

  • Visiting our shop in Sparks Bristol.
  • Volunteering to help sort donations or help in our shop.  For further information visit 
  • Donating good quality pre-loved maternity wear and children's clothes, shoes, fancy dress, toys and books for ages 0-5 years. Please bring these to Sparks during our opening hours, and check our social media or website to see what we need.
  • Spreading the word about our shop and Sparks Bristol with your networks.

Follow Baby Bank Network on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter 

To find out more about Sparks Bristol visit: