This colourful plastic jungle crafted from discarded litter is creating a stir – as well as a cleaner environment – on a Sheffield street.
Artist and architectural designer Brian Marsh was inspired to make his sculpture, formed from colourful empty bottles, after a motorbike tour in northern Thailand where he saw how rural communities reused their waste.
He produced an installation of an urban jungle from discarded packaging, which went on show at University College Barnsley, and is now recycling it in a display at his home on Hawkesley Avenue, Hillsborough.
Dad-of-two Brian, aged 61, said: “When I was in Thailand I was really impressed with how they never let anything go to waste, they repurpose and recycle so many things. When I came back I decided it would be nice to have something of a jungle of my own so this has been step one in that.
“The flowers are made up mainly of plastic bottles because I knew that is something that there was plenty of, some of them I have collected off the street, others I have used at home and work.
“When they were on display at the college they were in a confined space with humidity, swampy conditions and a jungle soundtrack which people said was a great experience. People tend to think that it is bonkers when they see it! It is a comment on the amount of litter that gets dropped.”
Brian decided to share his flower festival to back Sheffield Council’s new anti-litter campaign Clean Sheffield.
The £100,000 drive, launched last month, aims to tackle litter, dog fouling and fly-tipping over the next year.
One key strand of the campaign is encouraging people to pick up dropped rubbish they see.
Brian said he backed the campaign and hoped more people would be inspired to reuse their rubbish.
He added: “I am proud of my home city in so many ways but am always ashamed and dismayed when I see litter discarded without any thought to the environmental consequences and the eyesore this creates.”
Organisers of Clean Sheffield, being run by the council’s Streets Ahead contract, hope to involve Brian in the project.
Coun Terry Fox, cabinet member for environment and transport, said: “It is fantastic to see how creative Mr Marsh has been with the litter that has been discarded in his street and to see that something so beautiful can be made from litter.”
n To report litter or fly tipping call 0114 2734567 or visit www.sheffield.gov.uk.