THE planet is safe in the hands of these young people.

They may still be in school, but these young people are already bringing about change to save the "Blue Planet" — and encouraging others to join their campaign

Inspired by the David Attenborough's BBC series, pupils at Markland Hill Primary are campaigning to reduce single-use plastics in schools and in their home.

Already they have persuaded the school meals service to stop using tomato sauce plastic sachets — and their school milk cartons with plastic straws are being replaced with milk cups.

So moved were the children after seeing the devastating damage plastic waste was having on those living in the oceans, they decided to take action — and to bring about a big change.

Their determination was prompted by a school project about the oceans and developed into something much bigger after watching clips from the television series.

Nicola Ewens, assistant head, said: "The children did their own research about the ocean and were so moved about what they found out and wanted to do more.

"One pupil found a fact which said there is more micro-plastic in oceans than stars."

Since then pupils have set up an anti-littering club, researching how materials other than plastics can be used to wrap sandwiches and ensuring parents are on board with their idea.

The school staged an Eco-Week promoting recycling with children building a turtle sculpture from recycled plastic.

Mrs Ewens said: "The young people do feel empowered, when I told the girls about tomato sauce sachets, they said 'we did that'.

"We have been blown away with how far the project has gone.

"They will be able to bring about change in the future."

Their work won national recognition from Surfers Against Sewage for their work winning a schools competition with their rap urging people not to litter.

Riya Patel, aged nine, said: "At school we have been learning about litter and plastic and how it impacts on the land and oceans.

"Before this, I didn't think about how big this problem actually is. because of this, I have given up using throw away plastic bottles and started using a refillable one. I couldn't believe some of the facts I found out and thought things must change. This has made picking up litter more fun now I understand this more."

Joe Davies, also aged nine, added: "It made me feel so sad to learn that in 2050, there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish. It also made me feel disappointed in the people who are causing this damage. My life has changed! I pick up litter and plastic when I see it, and we do recycling at home."

The school is going for the Green Flag Award and is exploring more ways of looking after the planet and the creatures who live on it.