The collaborative project ‘Banners to Bags’ has transformed City of Palmerston’s obsolete advertising banners into a sustainable useable accessory in the form of tote bags.

The Banners to Bags project has successfully repurposed over 20 obsolete advertising banners, totalling more than 100m2, into durable and sustainable tote bags. Through this initiative, more than 100 water-resistant bags have been created, ideal for various activities such as trips to SWELL or library visits. The bags have been brought to life by STEPS Group through their Adult Migrant English Program where students have been busy cutting, creating and sewing these bags together.

“Thank you so much for the opportunity for STEPS Migrant students from the Adult Migrant English Program (AMEP) at STEPS Palmerston to be part of the “Banners to Bags” project.  Our students have been busy creating beautiful tote bags from City of Palmerston’s old council banners that are no longer being used,” said Yvonne Coleman from STEPS.

City of Palmerston will be proudly distributing the upcycled tote bags for free at events around the community, breathing new life into the banners that would otherwise have been sent to landfill, and providing the community with a versatile alternative to single-use plastic bags.

PVC-lined vinyl banners are not biodegradable and unable to be recycled, therefore without this project would end up in landfill. This can take thousands of years to decompose and impact our soil, air, wildlife, and health.

Council is committed to looking for suitable, more environmentally friendly alternatives to vinyl banners moving forward.

Mayor Athina Pascoe-Bell expressed her enthusiasm, stating, "By engaging our local STEPS Group to bring Banners to Bags to life, we've demonstrated that effective waste-reducing solutions are well within our reach. We are dedicated to exploring creative approaches to enhance our sustainability efforts, and we urge our local businesses and residents to join us in this endeavour."

For more information on the project and how it aligns with City of Palmerston’s Sustainability Strategy, visit