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Weekly Edition - Publication date:- 2017-18-11

-en Southport & Mersey Reporter

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Award winning 'Refresh' project to expand after show flat success

AN award winning up cycling project is expanding in Wirral after the success of a pilot scheme. 'Refresh' re-uses unwanted materials and furniture from Magenta Living's empty properties and 'Bulky Environmental Refuse Team' (BERT) service to prevent items going to landfill, minimise waste and reduce fly tipping.

To kick start the project, a show flat has been fully furnished using up cycled furniture to show what can be achieved with items that would otherwise have been wasted.

A well attended engagement workshop took place using an empty Magenta Living flat in Seacombe. Volunteers were involved in creating:- mood boards, painting, joinery and decorating unwanted furniture items used to furnish the flat and bring it back to life, whilst learning new skills in the process.

The project is delivered in partnership by Magenta Living, Wirral Council and Wirral Environmental Network (WEN) and aims to encourage Magenta Living tenants and the wider community to volunteer and up cycle furniture by providing residents with renovated and refreshed furniture for use in their homes.

Magenta Living has also used the service to furnish some of their properties to provide much needed support for new tenants.

Due to the success of this project and the show flat, Magenta Living, Wirral Council and WEN will be opening a new Refresh shop on Hoole Road, Woodchurch. This will be used for training in up cycling with a space available to display the up cycled furniture, ready for people from the community to use in their home.

The Mayor of Wirral, Cllr Ann McLachlan who officially opened the show flat said:- "I was delighted and surprised to see the fantastic job which had been made of the furniture, which fully kitted out the flat. It looked fantastic; the volunteers were so proud of their work and I have to say they were all very skilled, with lots of flair and imagination; whether painting, recovering or putting the whole scheme together. Anybody would be proud to live in that flat with such great decor and furniture. This is a great example of how different organisations working together, in this case Magenta Living, WEN and the Council, can produce such positive outcomes."

John Mycock, Assistant Director of Housing Services at Magenta Living said:- "Magenta Living residents have been involved in the Refresh project from the start and it's great to see what they have achieved. By volunteering and learning new skills this has encouraged them to improve their personal well-being and discover talents that they probably didn't realise they had."

The Refresh project won a Level 4 'Thriving' award at the Royal Horticultural Society, North West In Bloom:- 'It's Your Neighbourhood Awards 2017' for the fabulous floral displays the volunteers made out of various unwanted materials.

For further information about the Refresh project, contact:- Maureen Davies, Magenta Living's Environmental Services Manager, on:- 0808 100 9596.


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