A young Go-kart racer has given back to the community by using old spare tyres and creating them into hand made planters to donate to the community.

Catherine Potter, aged just 12 from Bowburn, along with her family, make planters in the shapes of strawberries and swans out of her recycled tyres from her kart.

Catherine along with her dad, David, 40, mam Emma, 34, brothers and sisters, Rebecca, 10, Thomas, eight and Elizabeth, aged six, have donated the planters to the elderly who are isolating, the vulnerable and to care homes in the area.

The family have donated hanging baskets to Bowburn Care Home, wooden planters as well as plants for the residents at Belmont Grange Care Home. They also donated a clock, swans pots and a mirror to the Air Ambulance for them to auction off.

After creating the swan planters, the family plant mint leaves to help take away the smell of hand sanitiser and flowers to improve mental health.

The County Durham family have made different shapes such as swans, strawberries, table lamps, clocks from the old tyres.

Dad David, a self-employed driving instructor, said: “Catherine really enjoys Go-karting, but there are a lot of tyres left spare.

“So eight months ago, we had all these spare old tyres and we first came up with the idea to design them into swans. The community have done so much for us, we just want to give back to them.”

The family started selling the hand made swan planters but since the start of lockdown, the swans have become popular.

David added: “We couldn’t just sit back and watch everyone help out for the community, especially during the lockdown. We had to help out, so the whole family have got involved.

“Before March, we were working away designing the swans, but since the start of the lockdown the popularity grew and we’ve been so busy.

“People wanted to start buying the swans, so we started selling with the money going to raise funds for compost, paint and flowers towards swans for the elderly.”

Due to the popularity, the family created a separate Facebook page ‘Retyred by Catherine’ to advertise their hard work and donations.

“They got so popular we had to stop selling them and start focusing on donating to the care homes and respite centres.

“We’re still taking donations and with any of the leftover money we had, we started buying wood and making park benches. We’ve just lost count of how many items we’ve made and donated,” said David.

Catherine and her family have started sending blank swans and strawberry planters to residential homes as an activity for the elderly and children with disabilities.

Catherine, who has been karting for three years, added: “I enjoy making the tyres, especially the strawberry ones. I can’t believe they have been so popular.”

To find out more about Catherine’s project click here.


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