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Few people are aware that old mobile phones can be recycled, according to research published today which "reveals" that more than three quarters of a million handsets were dumped over the last few weeks.

According to a syrvey by environmentally-friendly retailer The Body Shop and mobile phone recycling outfit Greener Solutions, more than 750,000 phones have been discarded or stuffed in a drawer after people received new handsets for Christmas.

According to a poll, just one in 20 mobile phone users said they would be recycling their old phones, while three in ten said they'll either do nothing with their old phone or will simply throw it away.

More than half of those quizzed said they didn't know that their old phone could be recycled - perhaps raising funds for charity in the process.

Launching a recycling scheme that will see each phone earn £2.75 for domestic violence charity, Refuge, Body Shop founder Anita Roddick said: "A new mobile may be a great gift for the person who wants to have up-to-the-minute technology but most people aren't aware that they can do something better with their old phone than tuck it in the back of a cupboard.

"Three-quarters of a million unwanted phones equates to over £"2 million that could be used to throw a lifeline to the victims of domestic violence and their families. We urge everyone who received a new mobile for Christmas to bring the old one into their nearest The Body Shop store and help our fight against violence in the home." ®

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