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The Shopping Trolley Oyster Reef: the tools of consumption reimagined for ecological production


The first blueprint produced for The Manuals will be trialed in the Thames Estuary as part of a project by Something & Son, with the Zoological Society of London, Blue Marine Foundation and local oystermen from Mersea Island. 

We will be working with Estuary Festival, which is run Whitstable Biennale and arts organisation Metal, to make the idea a reality. An open-source version of the finished product will be included in the first edition of The Manuals.
How does it work?
Supermarket trolleys are structurally similar to the artificial reefs built by oyster farmers. These reefs filter water, provide three-dimensional spaces of refuge for countless species of fish and their young, and stabilize shorelines by buffering wave energy.

Oysters are not isolated species: they are world-builders, whose shells form the architecture of underwater civilisations and allow other habitats such as seagrass beds and marsh areas to form.