University of Northampton student designs eco-friendly bird box that will be sold nationally in charity shops

The bird box is made from recycled wood and will soon be on sale nationwide
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Shoppers across the UK will soon be able to buy an eco-friendly birdhouse that has been designed by a University of Northampton student.

Joe Hurren’s bird box design, which is made from recycled wood, will soon be going into production before being sold in Sue Ryder charity shops across the nation.

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Joe was one of four Product Design students who accepted a challenge to come up with garden items made from pallets and recycled wood, with the chance of them being made and sold in the shops, with all proceeds going to the palliative, neurological and bereavement support charity.

Joe Hurren with his bird box.Joe Hurren with his bird box.
Joe Hurren with his bird box.

Caroline Hatfield, who is a buyer for Sue Ryder, said: “We’ve been really impressed with the ideas the students came up with and it’s great to know that Joe’s design was good enough to be made and sold in our shops.

“This project fits in perfectly with the current Sue Ryder corporate strategy, which has reduce, reuse and recycle at its heart.

“Eighty percent of the new stock we sold in shops came from China, which is something we are determined to drastically reduce, and projects like this are helping us to achieve this aim.”

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In addition to the bird box’s recycled credentials, the product is also playing a role in the British justice system, as it will be manufactured by people on probation in Bedfordshire.

Caroline added: “The East of England Probation Service is excited to engage with this project as in addition to the completion of their unpaid work hours, people on probation will be given the opportunity to gain some really useful transferrable skills which may reduce their likelihood of reoffending.

“Joe’s design will help to provide meaningful work for people on probation, much needed funds for the charity, and will therefore benefit society more widely.”

Joe, who is a second year student, said: “I was delighted they chose my bird box for production and I can’t wait to see it on sale in the shops.

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“I’ve really enjoyed this project and what’s made it even better for me is that it’s satisfying to be able to support a charity.”

The three other students who took part in the challenge were first years May-Louise Ellis-Handley and Ella Sharman and second year, Jack Shave.