Tumble Dryer Sales Are, Well, Tumbling. Washing Lines And Pegs On The Up!

Tony Rollinson
Monday, 8th August 2011

As energy prices rise again the tumble dryer industry is in the midst of a massive slump in sales. A report by market analysts Mintel shows that environment conscious families are moving back to pegging out their washing to save money. It looks like our back garden horizons are filling up with some good ol' laundry!

A new report by Mintel shows that the British public are taking a significant step away from costly tumble dryers, washer dryers and washing machines and embracing the old fashioned washing line and peg.

Sales of tumble dryers have slumped 30% in the past five years and from 1.3 million in 2006 to 900,000 last year, a fall of more than 30 per cent in five years. Of the UK's 27 million households less than half now own a tumble dryer. Mintel highlight the main reasons as being spiraling electricity costs and a desire amongst families and communities to be more energy efficient and environmentally conscious.

The Energy Savings Trust estimates that using a tumble dryer for every wash costs a household more than £70 a year. The report also found that those who do own a dryer are now using it less than before.

To match the new demand, supermarkets have expanded ranges of lines and pegs. The LinePost Company, in South Wales, has seen orders double in the past two years and sales of rotary lines and indoor airers have also seen a sales boom.

Well, this is probably the easiest climate awareness and action revolution in the world to join – one that will literally not cost people a penny. So, do encourage any naughty neighbours to use those washing lines.

We appreciate that in colder and darker parts of the UK there will be limits to what you can dry. So, it would be great to hear from any Permaculture readers with suggestions and solutions as to how to dry clothes and bedding naturally in such areas.

We would also love to see any photographs of funky washing lines and pegs in action! Lets celebrate the return of the glorious line and peg – may our skies once again be filled with colour and gusting, flapping shapes galore!


Greenfibres - the other side of successful washing is the right products. They have an eco cleaning section that is worth looking at.  

Ecover - the ground breaking detergent company

Jackie Stewart |
Thu, 11/08/2011 - 12:14

Hanging out the washing feeds the soul in a way that tumble driers simply don't! Inspirational blog by Julie Gibbons on Essence of Wild: http://essenceofwild.co.uk/2011/07/suburban-alchemy/