Doncaster academies Trust school uniforms made of half a million plastic bottles

A leading family of schools has passed the milestone of saving over one million plastic bottles this year, thanks to its uniform being made from recycled bottles by supplier, Trutex.

Tuesday, 26th October 2021, 1:16 pm
Updated Tuesday, 26th October 2021, 1:16 pm

The uniform at Outwood Grange Academies Trust’s 24 secondary schools across the North of England consists of blazers and trousers that are manufactured by Trutex, made using fabric that has been manufactured from recycled drinks bottles.

The data is taken from sales on the Trutex Direct website for each academy and also each academy's Direct to School account.

Katy Bradford, chief operating officer said: “This is an incredible achievement and one we are very proud to have accomplished. We are passionate about the issue of sustainability and we work hard across the Outwood Family to spread awareness of it.

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The uniform at Outwood Grange Academies Trust’s 24 secondary schools across the North of England consists of blazers and trousers that are manufactured by Trutex, made using fabric that has been manufactured from recycled drinks bottles.

“We are delighted that our relationship with Trutex continues to help us promote sustainability and managing to save over one million plastic bottles from ending up in landfill having managed to save over 600,000 previous academic year is something we take great pride in.”

Each Trutex blazer saves around 36 plastic bottles from ending up in a landfill site while a pair of boys trousers saves 19 bottles. The numbers for Outwood have been calculated from the Outwood blazers and boy’s trousers ordered from Trutex. The Trust provides every child who joins the school with a free set of uniform, including their blazer.

To make a yarn suitable for use in high quality Trutex blazers and boy’s trousers, the plastic bottles are put together in a bale which is then broken down into flake. The flake then goes through a de-polymerisation and re-polymerisation process to make recycled chips which are melted and extruded to make yarn.

The yarn is then woven into the high quality fabric that is used to make the Outwood Family blazer.

Matthew Easter, CEO at Trutex, added: “We are proud to supply Outwood Grange Academies and were delighted to reach the significant milestone of saving over 1 million plastic bottles from landfill. Our own commitment in sustainability is aligned with the Trust having had carbon neutral status since 2012 and also launching our own uniform recycling project. We look forward to saving even more bottles next year and help provide parents with a Pre-loved uniform option.”

The milestone news comes months after Outwood and Trutex launched a recycling campaign that saw a recycle bin housed at each of the Outwood academies, more than 35 in total, that enabled students and their families to donate items of school uniform that they no longer wear or need. These items will then be collected by Trutex to be repaired, if necessary, washed and made ready for purchase as pre-loved uniform items.

The figures behind the reason for the campaign are eye-catching as by extending the life of clothing by just nine months can reduce carbon and water usage by up to 10 per cent, while helping reduce the staggering amount of garments that are sent to landfill every year, a figure that currently stands at over 350,000 tonnes of clothing every year.