Get involved with Recycle Week and Recycle Right

Published: Monday, October 16, 2023

  • Get involved with Recycle Week, and find out more about common items that are incorrectly recycled.
  • We’re investing heavily to make it easier to recycle through our Cleaner Borough Plan.
  • Food waste collection, new cleaner vehicles and more bins on estates are all part of the plans.

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To mark recycling week, we are encouraging residents of all ages to get involved and support the national campaign; recycling more of the right things, more often. In Wandsworth, for example, many residents think you can recycle nappies, tissues, wet wipes and polystyrene but you can’t, they actually go in your household rubbish.

Household and communal bin recycling
Here are some of the most common items that can and can’t be recycled, when collected from your home, or from a communal recycling bin.

DO recycle

  • Food and tin cans
  • Glass bottles and jars
  • Paper and cardboard – just make sure it’s folded down and flat
  • Plastic bottles, pots, tubs and trays – rinse off any food first
  • Food and drinks cartons.

DON’T recycle

  • Nappies
  • Polystyrene
  • Tissues and wet wipes
  • Batteries
  • Clothes and textiles
  • Plastic bags.

Batteries are another item, where people often aren’t sure what you can do. In fact, they can’t go in with your rubbish or recycling, as this can cause a fire. Read more to find out how to dispose of batteries safely and responsibly.

Improving your rubbish and recycling services
We are playing our part too, as a council, and stepping up the quality of rubbish and recycling collection services in the borough, introducing a new food waste collection service, rolling out new banks for small electricals, as well as ensuring missed collections and messy spillages are tackled swiftly.

The changes are part of a broader set of improvements called our Cleaner Borough Plan that will make it easier and simpler to recycle – and help towards the council’s aim to build a more sustainable borough – with the help of all residents.

These bold ambitions – delivered through a refreshed 4-year waste contract – include:

• Guaranteed weekly rubbish and recycling collections – many councils are moving away from weekly collections – but we will continue to pick up waste every week.

• Introducing food waste collections for all in 2024 – we’ll roll out a new food waste collection service by December 2024 – we want to improve recycling rates by up to four per cent.

• Better services for housing estates – crews will pick up the waste and recycling left by the side of rubbish bins as well as the bins themselves and provide. We’ll provide more bins, better signage and improved communications.

• A new fleet of modern vehicles – the new fleet can run on used cooking oil to drastically cut carbon emissions and will have more efficient in-cab technology. We’ll work harder so missed collections can be identified and quickly picked up.

• Improved recycling services - we will make it easier to recycle food, batteries, electrical equipment and more - with clear information on what can be recycled.

• More Mega Skips – increased from 12 to 18 days this year - which has already reduced fly-tipping by 11%.

Councillor Judi Gasser, Cabinet Member for Environment, said: “As a council, we are investing heavily to ensure we do our part and make it easier for residents to recycle. Our plans include the introduction of a borough-wide food waste collection service, new greener vehicles, and missed collections are tackled.

“We are really passionate about making this a priority, so we work together with everyone locally to improve our recycling rates as a borough and build a sustainable future for all."