Plastic isn’t fantastic for Elmer the elephant on his big parade

Jason Alexander with Jo Beattie from the St Elizabeth Hospice. Jason will be designing their offici

Jason Alexander with Jo Beattie from the St Elizabeth Hospice. Jason will be designing their official Elmer using recycled plastic Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN - Credit: Archant

The latest Elmer to be announced for this year’s Elmer’s Big Parade Suffolk is out to show that plastic is more than just a load of rubbish.

Norman Lloyd campaign manager for St Elizabeth Hospice and Jason Alexander Picture: JENNIE HUTCHINSO

Norman Lloyd campaign manager for St Elizabeth Hospice and Jason Alexander Picture: JENNIE HUTCHINSON - Credit: Archant

The latest Elmer to be announced for this year’s Elmer’s Big Parade Suffolk is out to show that plastic is more than just a load of rubbish.

The eco-warrior elephant, commissioned by St Elizabeth Hospice as their official entry for the parade, was delivered to La Tour Cycle Cafe in Ipswich in preparation for its decoration.

Local wildlife and technology expert, Jason Alexander - known as the Wildlife Gadget Man - has based his design for the elephant on the original Elmer the Patchwork Elephant from the childrens book series.

Instead of paint however, the patches will be decorated using only single-use plastics, most of which being bottle tops.

Elmer designer Jason Alexander and Lush Ipswich store manager Sarah Hiorns, who has been collecting

Elmer designer Jason Alexander and Lush Ipswich store manager Sarah Hiorns, who has been collecting plastic bottle tops in store. Picture: OLIVER SULLIVAN - Credit: Archant


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Jason, 47, has been collecting the plastic during his ‘rubbish walks’ across the country and in collection bins set up in local stores and schools.

“I chose to decorate using bottle tops as there’s a lot of confusion about them,” he said. “It’s a perfect example of a single-use plastic, a lot of people get confused about whether or not they’re recyclable and sadly I do find lots of them on my rubbish walks.

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“I want to get people thinking about single-use plastics and litter. It would be interesting to get people to guess how much plastic has been used to decorate Elmer, I think it would shock a lot of people.

“For once, single-use plastic is going to have a positive effect on the world, as with my design not only am I helping a great charity in St Elizabeth Hospice, but also raising awareness about a serious environmental issue. I’ve chosen to work on Elmer in the cafe as it’s a public space, where everyone can see and understand.”

Mark Millar, Chief Executive at St Elizabeth Hospice, said: “Here at the hospice we are well aware of how important it is to reduce our impact on the environment, both on site at our various locations, and out and about in our local community, and over the last 18 months have really increased our efforts to improve our processes.

“I am really pleased that we can work with Jason to get others involved too and help spread this message even further through Elmer’s Big Parade Suffolk.”

Jason Alexander with Jo Beattie from the St Elizabeth Hospice. Jason will be designing their offici

Jason Alexander with Jo Beattie from the St Elizabeth Hospice. Jason will be designing their official Elmer using recycled plastic Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN - Credit: Archant

Jason Alexander with Jo Beattie from the St Elizabeth Hospice. Jason will be designing their offici

Jason Alexander with Jo Beattie from the St Elizabeth Hospice. Jason will be designing their official Elmer using recycled plastic Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN - Credit: Archant

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