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Britain’s first plastic-free nursery has been unveiled, as artificial toys are swapped with wooden alternatives and food with unrecyclable packaging is banned.

New World Nursery in Washington, Tyne and Wear, has spent two years and £400 making its rooms eco-friendly to help stimulate children’s imagination. It is believed to be the first time a British nursery has gone completely plastic free.

Mother-of-two Emily Padgett, who is behind the transformation, said a natural environment helps children improve their critical thinking skills and become better learners because they have to use their imagination more. She added: “Since we started introducing the changes, we’ve actually noticed the children’s behaviour has changed – they are more engrossed and have higher levels of curiosity and wonder.”

She told The Telegraph: “Toys made from natural materials are very open-ended and can stimulate children’s imagination, as opposed to just pushing a button on a plastic car and it making a noise. “Eco-friendly toys last much longer than plastic ones too. They are calming for children and it makes them more engrossed in what they are doing. It’s not all about noise and flashing lights!”

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Photo courtesy Mercury Press & Media

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