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Waste and recycling FAQs

Residents often ask us for more information about our waste and recycling services so we've published answers to some of the most frequently asked questions below, to help you.

This includes information about bins and bin collections, what to do with extra rubbish or recycling and how to dispose of garden waste.

Household waste

What do I need to do to make sure my bin is emptied?

Please make sure that your bin is out ready for collection by 7am on the morning of collection and that the bin lid is fully closed. Our lifting equipment can damage the bins if the lid is not fully closed. Vermin and flies will also be able to get into the bin if the lid is not shut.

Bins with open or partly open lids will not be emptied and we are not able to take any waste left on the top of or at the side of bins. Please remember that bins containing the wrong items will not be collected.

How will the elderly or people with disabilities manage to move a wheeled bin?

We understand that not everyone will be able to manage a wheeled bin, and, if necessary we will offer an Assisted Collection service, whereby the wheeled bin is fetched and returned to a point nearer to your house.   

This service is open to people who through illness, age or disability are unable to pull the bins to their property boundary. This service is only available when there is no-one in the household who is physically able to move the bins. Contact Customer Services for more information.

What if my bin is damaged or stolen?

If your bin has been damaged or stolen, please report this to us.

What happens if I can’t get all my rubbish into my black bin?

If there are five or more in your family and you are recycling all that you can we can provide an additional black bin.

We can only empty bins which have the lid closed and can only empty your bin - any other bags of refuse will be left behind. This may seem harsh but it is vital if we are to reduce the amount of rubbish we send for disposal and increase our recycling rate.

Does the council collect bulky items, such as large electrical items or furniture?

We operate a bulky waste collection service for larger household items for which there is a charge, please see our bulky waste collection page for more details.

What if I don’t want a wheeled bin?

Unless there are genuine reasons for not being able to have wheeled bins, such as access problems or storage space, you will be asked to use bins for disposal of your waste and recycling.      

Garden waste

We operate a paid-for garden waste collection service

Domestic households can subscribe to a regular collection of green/garden waste via a standard size wheelie bin. A sticker is supplied to identify subscribed green bins and the annual service year runs from 1 April until 31 March each year. 

Find out more about green waste collections

Can I put my garden waste in bags in my green bin?

No. Please put all materials in the green bin loose or your bin will not get emptied.

Can I put soil or rubble in the green bin?

No. We don't allow these materials to be put into green bins because they interfere with the composting process.

Can I have more than one green bin?

Yes. You can choose the number of green bins you would like to subscribe for. All bins are charged at the standard rate for the annual subscription.

Can I have a smaller green bin?

Unfortunately we only supply one size of green bin which is 240 litre capacity.

Why can’t I put vegetable peelings in my green bin?

Due to animal by-product regulations, we can't accept anything other than garden waste in your green bin. This is because all the garden waste we collect is sent to windrow composting sites (open air sites) and any waste from your kitchen may be contaminated with meat products, which could result in the spread of diseases.        


Do I have to rinse out my tins, bottles and jars?

Yes, please. The recycling materials which we collect are sent for onward sorting, and are not washed during this process. If the containers still have any food in them, this will contaminate other recyclables.

What happens if I put waste in the wrong bin?    

If your bin is found to contain items which should not be in there it will not be collected as this could lead to an entire load being rejected at the sorting centre.  You will be notified of the problem with a tag on the bin and advised to remedy it before collections recommence.

What if I can’t fit all my recyclables in my bin?       

If you have excess recyclables you can take this to the Civic Amenity sites or to the local recycling sites around the county. If you would like an additional grey recycling bin, please contact Customer Services.

What happens to the recycling that is collected?

The mixed recyclables are taken to a Materials Recovery Facility where they are sorted and then sent for recycling into other products. 

Where can I recycle my used energy saving light bulbs and what happens to them?

Your old energy efficient light bulbs and fluorescent tubes should be disposed of at your local Civic Amenity Site and they will then be recycled.

Can incontinence pads go in my black bin?

Yes, they can. They are classed as non-hazardous (low grade clinical waste). All hygiene wastes such as bandages, dressings, drainage bags, colostomy bags and incontinent pads can be included within your black refuse bin.

Does the council collect clinical waste from domestic properties?

Yes. Clinical waste is collected free of charge from domestic properties. These collections can only be arranged through your local GP. For more information please contact Customer Services.       

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