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Bottlin’ It for Westival


THAT’S THE STUFF Children of Lankill NS stuffing plastic bottles to make eco bricks.

As part of Westival’s Education Programme, artists Nicky Dowd and Siobhán McGuire are working with the Lankill, Carrakennedy and Quay National Schools to build street furniture out of non recyclable plastic.
During their Bottlin’ It workshops, held under the Eco Bricks Community Schools Project,  children have been learning the value of ‘Don’t bin it, bottle it’, with a little help from Westport Ladies Club and Westport Eco Congregation. Their aim is to collect over 500 plastic water bottles from homes, beaches and hostelries. They will then clean them out and stuff them with single-use plastic waste to produce rigid ‘bottle bricks’.
“These bricks provide an affordable, strong building material with fantastic insulation qualities, and they are being used in Asia to build new schools whilst cleaning up the environment. It’s very rewarding to push all your wrappers, lids, sellophane, cling film into one bottle which would normally go to land fill,” explains Nicky Dowd.
“Our bricks are going to be bound together with decorative plastic netting from vegetable packaging and made into seating for the duration of the festival before being used in the school playgrounds.”
Children from Lankill NS will be in Westport’s SuperValu and Pax eco-store this Friday, October 11, from 10am to 12 noon, taking any unwanted single-use plastic waste from customers and demonstrating how to make the bottle bricks.
Watch out for the seats they make from the bottles, which will be located around the town during the festival, from October 23 to 28. Take a pew and admire the children’s creative ingenuity!

For more on Westival – Westport Music and Arts Festival, which takes place this year from October 23 to 28, see