Sunday, 21 July 2019

Pupils collect 5,000 empty crisp packets for recycling

Pupils collect 5,000 empty crisp packets for recycling

MORE than 5,000 crisp packets have been recycled by pupils at Langtree School in Woodcote.

The children began collecting them at the start of the summer term under a scheme run by manufacturer Walkers and waste company Terracycle.

They split into teams and competed with one another each week to collect the most packets from friends and relatives.

Computing and business teacher Emma Morel, who came up with the idea, boxed up their first 2,500 packets and sent them to Walkers by post. The students have since collected another 2,500 in several bin bags to send off.

The school plans to continue participating and hopes to beat the current record of 50,000 packets. It may also join other schemes to recycle other types of packaging.

Supporters include year 7 pupil Tommy Stevens who has now taken to regularly picking up litter up in the school playground.

Classmates Amy Griffin and Hannah Bates collected a large number from friends in the 1st Purley and Pangbourne Scouts while year 8 pupil Niamh Hall carried out doorstep collections in Woodcote. Mrs Morel, whose son Finn is also taking part, said: “We’re trying to take more responsibility for making less of an environmental impact and also reduce litter on the playground.

“We did an assembly where we saw pictures of 30-year-old crisp packets washing up on beaches, which brings home the fact that they don’t break down and will be around for a long time.

“We’d like to collect other items as well but the big issue is storage as we’re keeping these big bags in the school office and the staff are having to work around them.” Hannah said: “It’s funny to see so many crisp packets in one place but it makes you think about how many are going to landfill and the amount we’re generating.”

Amy said: “We’re just one school and we’ve only been collecting crisp packets but the pile looks huge so you realise just how much plastic waste must be getting thrown away everywhere.”

Tommy said: “Some tutor groups were collecting 200 packets a week, which is amazing.

“There’s so much rivalry between groups that we’ve had to keep them locked up to stop them being stolen!”

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