A THREE metre high illuminated tap sculpture has been installed in the centre of Oxford to promote a water refill scheme.

Made up of 300 plastic water bottles - the number used in Oxford every eight minutes - the artwork was unveiled in Bonn Square yesterday afternoon.

It comes as 150 organisations in the city have signed up to offer free tap water in an attempt to cut back on the amount of plastic wasted.

Artist Lois Muddiman came up with the idea for the sculpture as a way of officially launching the Refill Oxford scheme.

She said: "As an artist and climate change campaigner, this piece of work is very close to my heart.

"I hope it inspires people in Oxford to stop buying so much single use plastic."

Businesses including cafes, bars, restaurants, pubs and clubs are all displaying a blue-branded refill sticker in their window to signal to passers-by that they are part of the scheme.

Anyone can go in to any of these businesses and ask for their water bottle to be filled up.

Organisers are hoping that they will have a 'huge impact' on the amount of plastic waste generated and are targeting tourists, commuters and students as well as residents.

The launch has been sponsored by W&S Recycling and supported by Oxford City Council, Oxford Bus Company and Experience Oxfordshire, among others.

Councillor Tom Hayes said: “We have to stop trashing Oxford. For the good of the planet all of us urgently need to break free from single-use plastic."