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Published 11th Apr 2011

Building a greenhouse with Bottle at St. Bernadette's RC Primary School

Schoolchildren in Middlesbrough are getting their dream greenhouse – but it’s taking a lot of bottle!

The youngsters of St Bernadette’s RC Primary in Nunthorpe already have great green credentials thanks to their efforts at reducing, reusing and recycling.

And they’re about to get a long-awaited greenhouse with a difference – it’s being made out of more than 1,000 plastic bottles.

The school’s Allotment Garden Club has been up and running for a year, helping the youngsters and their families to grow healthy produce at a fraction of supermarket prices. The raised beds were created with the help of three neighbours of the school fondly known as ‘the Grumpy Gardeners’.

But the budding junior gardeners struggled to get their plants to grow from seed at the beginning of last season as their cheap greenhouses simply blew down in high winds.

Something more substantial was needed – and as funds were not available to buy a good quality greenhouse, the decision was taken to build the school’s very own eco-friendly hothouse from two-litre plastic bottles.

Six months later the team has amassed a staggering 1,500 bottles and work on the unique greenhouse is due to get under way on Saturday (April 9).

Steve Pemberton, one of the dads at school, is a joiner and is lending his skills to ensure construction goes without a hitch – and other materials have been provided free of charge by B&Q after he contacted them and told them about the project.

The fun is due to start at 9.30am and will involve the headteacher and members of staff, youngsters from the gardening club and their parents and some staff from a local bank.

The school’s ‘Let’s get cooking club’ will provide food and refreshments for those carrying out the hard work.

Headteacher Mary Cobbold said: “Collecting more than 1,000 bottles wasn’t straightforward as the children at our school are not encouraged to drink fizzy pop! The staff at Barclaycard were a fantastic help providing another 500.

“As a result of everyone’s effort especially the staff we finally got there after six months of hard work.

“It will be hugely satisfying for everyone involved to have built their own unique greenhouse, and I’m sure it will play a vital part in helping to create great produce for many years to come.”

Useful links

St. Bernadette's RC Primary School

Love Middlesbrough: Key Strengths - Environment



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