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Ikea bath boats clear trash from the Thames to mark sustainable store launch


By Imogen Watson, Senior reporter

February 18, 2019 | 3 min read

Ikea has unveiled two large scale replicas of its Smakryp bath boat. They will be used to clear rubbish from London's waterways in the coming weeks.

Ikea's Captain of the Good Ship in Deptford Creek

Ikea's Captain of the Good Ship in Deptford Creek

To help with the 300 tonnes of rubbish cleared from the Thames every year, two versions of the 'Good Ship Ikea,' created by Mother, will trawl Deptford Creek throughout the half term, to coincide with the opening of Ikea's Greenwich sustainable store.

Each of the boats currently in action uses 'Orca' technology that allows them to collect up to 20kg of rubbish at once.

As part of the cleanup initiative, Ikea will partner with Creekside Education Trust to provide a half-term educational experience for local families.


Families can sign up to 'captain' the boat remotely and positively partake in removing rubbish and debris from the surface of the Thames.

The rubbish removed will be upcycled into a unique sculpture, which will stand in its newly opened Greenwich store. As part of its commitment to making a positive impact on society, Ikea will donate the ships to the sustainable charity, Hubbub.

Helen Aylett, Ikea Greenwich store manager, said: “Ikea is committed to playing a key role in the community and the Good Ship Ikea is just one of many ways we are demonstrating this. In partnership with Creekside Education Trust and Hubbub, we are taking on the important issue of plastic pollution with a playful activity and encouraging children and families to join us in cleaning up the local area.”

Jill Goddard, chair of Creekside Education Trust said: “We have over 7,000 local school children and their families visiting us every year and we are primed to educate them on plastic usage, the harm it causes our local wildlife and how it ends up in Deptford Creek, the Thames and eventually the ocean.

"We are delighted to be teaming up with Ikea on delivering a fun but educational activity for the local community during half-term. So much plastic rubbish comes through the river watercourse and we strongly believe that if we all do a little bit, our waterways will be hugely improved for all of us.”

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