It's neck and neck as Shropshire giraffes to spread recycling message
A novel way of helping young people to get across the recycling message has been launched by Shropshire's Ironwork Centre.
The tourist attraction is heading up the National Schools Bottle Top Recycling Challenge and already schools from as far afield as Northumberland, Devon and even Belfast are on board.
Each school will borrow a wire mesh sculpture of a giraffe from the centre, which will act as an artistic store for bottle top collections.
Earlier this year, Adams School in Wem was loaned a gorilla to fill with bottle tops.
Chairman of the centre, Clive Knowles, said: "Each participating school will be given the opportunity to borrow a giraffe for a month where they can fill it as many times as they wish with metal and plastic bottle tops. Once they have reached their personal goal, we ask that each school uses the recycled bottle tops to create something of use for their school or community, such as art projects or even footpaths.
"So many have contacted us to take on the challenge of collecting the most bottle tops that we’ve had to extend the project so it spans the entirety of a year, starting immediately.
"This completely free project has been specifically designed to help educate children about the importance of protecting our planet whilst inspiring them to think both innovatively and creatively in order to help make important environmental changes. This project aims to show children that waste can be a valuable resource in creating useful products and that recycling can be extremely rewarding."
The school which collects the most bottle tops and the school which creates the most innovative project will be rewarded with a trip to a zoo, safari park or aquarium, where they will have the opportunity to learn a little bit more about the animals they have helped through their project. Individual students who showcase innovation and large collection numbers will also receive a special certificate to reward their efforts.
Mr Knowles added: "We are extremely excited to watch this project unfold over the coming months and cannot wait to see all the creative designs that come along with it! If you and your school who would love to take part in this unique opportunity, please get in touch with us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or ring us on 0800 6888386."