By Daniela Hernandez

A COMMUNITY nursery in Oxford is asking locals to bring in hundreds of 'bricks' made out of plastic bottles stuffed with bags.

Cutteslowe garden centre has declared itself an official 'ecobrick' bank and is taking donations in all sizes.

An Ecobrick, also known as bottle brick, is a reusable building block created by packing clean and dry used plastic into a plastic bottle to a set density.

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The team at Cutteslowe Horticultural Therapy & Garden Centre are hoping to use the bricks for an interactive, educational project aiming to teach children about environmentally-friendly construction.

Their second plan is to insulate their office using walls of the bottles, creating a talking point for the public.

Oxford Mail:

Support worker Mikaela Wilson said: "Ecobricks offer everyone, no matter what your background may be, a positive step in the right direction towards building greener, more sustainable futures.

"It can often seem like an impossible task to do the right thing these days but we are trying to make ‘doing the right thing’ not only more manageable but also a bit of fun."

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Plastic pollution has become one of the planet's most pressing environmental issues, as rapidly-increasing production of disposable plastic products overwhelms the world’s ability to deal with them.

One of the major impacts produced by plastic pollution has been shown in a recent study by the University of Newcastle, Australia, where researchers concluded that an average person could be ingesting five grams of plastic every week – the equivalent of a credit card.

Oxford Mail:

Ecobricks are considered a simple way to reuse plastic rather than throw it away.

For those who would like to donate an ecobrick, the nursery has provided the following instructions:

1. Choose a plastic bottle

2. All plastic inserted must be clean and dry – cut down to size if needed

3. Get a stick and poke it down as tightly as possible.

4. Only put things in your bottle that cannot be recycled or won’t break down.

5. A perfect ecobrick will weigh 0.3g per ml that the bottle holds: a two-litre bottle will weigh 0.66kg and a 500ml bottle should weigh 0.15kg, to make sure the building structure is safe.

6. Be careful not to overfill your brick: although your brick should be packed full of plastic, it shouldn’t be pushing against the lid because it could end up making the lid come off.

You can send the ecobricks to the nursery at Cutteslowe Park, Harbord Road, OX2 8ES.

Around the world people are using ecobricks to build, from indoor furniture, to gardens and parks.

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The Global Ecobrick Alliance states on its website: "When we save, segregate and pack plastics into bottles, we can make building blocks that can be reused over and over again. Together we can build green spaces that enrich our community and environment.”

They have a community page on, where people can log the bricks they’ve made and see how much plastic they are removing from the landfills and oceans, and how much carbon is sequestered by their bricks.