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Recycling Guidance

Please search for a material to find out if and how it can be recycled.

A

Aerosols

  • You can recycle your aerosol cans in your Red recycling bin at home.

Make sure your aerosol cans are completely empty before recycling and do not pierce, crush or flatten them.

Aluminium Cans

  • Recycle your empty aluminium cans in your Red recycling bin at home or at your local Recycling Centre. Just give them a quick rinse first.
  • Did you know? 90% of all drinks cans sold in the UK every year are made of aluminium
  • Used aluminium drink cans can be recycled and back on supermarket shelves as new drink cans in as little as 60 days
  • Recycling aluminium drink cans saves up to 95% of the energy needed to make aluminium from its raw materials

Asbestos

Asbestos is classed as hazardous waste and must be disposed of accordingly.

If you come across a fly-tip that you believe may contain Asbestos this can be reported via the Council's Customer Service department on 01229 876543 or customerservices@barrowbc.gov.uk

Alternatively, as a Householder, if you wish to dispose of Asbestos this can be done at the HWRC (Household Waste recycling Centre) on Walney Road, sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by Cumbria County Council. However please contact them first on 01229 831564 to ensure they have enough space.

Ashes

  • Cold ashes (both from wood and coal) go in your general waste bin. Please make sure they are cold before disposing of them.

B

Baby items

Baby items such as clothes, toys and equipment that are in a reusable condition can be donated to your local charity shop.

You can also give them away for free online on websites like Freegle or Freecycle. Or if you want to make some extra cash, you could try selling them online via the many "seek and sell" sites that are currently available on social media platforms.

You can also take baby clothes and pairs of shoes to the textile banks at your local Recycling Centre.

For more information on how to reuse and revamp clothes visit the Love Your Clothes website.

Batteries

Ordinary household batteries can be recycled at the HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney Road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County Council. In addition most local supermarkets have battery collection facilities.

BBQ

  • Cold ashes go in your grey wheelie bin. Please make sure they are cold before disposing of them to avoid a fire risk.
  • If you are using a disposable Barbecue, again make sure it has cooled down first (Tip: pour some cold water on it before putting it in the grey bin)

Bulky Household Items (special collection)

If you are looking to dispose of a large number of items in one go, you can use the Council's Special Collection.

  • The £10 service charge covers any number of items so long as the whole collection takes no longer than 10 minutes to load.
  • If the items are likely to take more than 10 minutes to load a FCC Environment supervisor will provide a quote for removing the waste based on the current charge of £80 per hour including transportation time. This is in addition to the £10 charge taken by the Council
  • All items must be in the rear yard or the driveway (not in the street) and clearly separated from any other items which are not be collected.
  • Please note that fridges, freezers, dehumidifiers, TVs and computer monitors are collected on a Monday except when Monday is a bank holiday when it will be a Tuesday.

To arrange a Special Collection please contact 01229 876543

C

Car Batteries

Car Batteries can be taken to the HWRC (Household Waste recycling Centre) on Walney Road, sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by Cumbria County Council.

Cardboard

  • Cardboard boxes and all others types of card can be recycled in Red  recycling bin  at home. Make sure you flatten them to save space in your recycling bin. Remove all non-paper items like bubble wrap, plastic packaging and polystyrene and put them in your general waste bin.

This includes:

  • Cardboard packaging (such as empty cereal boxes)
  • Kitchen roll and toilet roll tubes
  • Cardboard boxes
  • Greeting cards (tear off any glitter)
  • Clothes labels or tags
  • Cardboard sleeves from ready meals
  • Egg boxes

Carrier Bags (Plastic)

  • Plastic bags cannot be recycled in your recycling bin. You can put them in your grey wheelie bin. Some supermarkets also have collection point for plastic bags.

If you use carrier bags to keep hold of your recyclable items before transferring them into the recycling bin, make sure you put the carrier bag in the grey refuse bin after emptying.

Buy a bag for life, they are readily available now at most supermarkets and large chain stores for a low cost. They come in a variety of styles and designs and can be used over and over again. Similarly you can buy bags online that are made from recycled material for example Smart Bags.

INFORMATION

Many African Countries have put a total ban on plastic bags. The developed world has so far not followed suit. Alnoor Almani - Consultant East Africa

Cartons (Tetra Pak)

  • Empty food and drink cartons (Tetra Pak) go in your Red recycling bin at home.

These can include:

  • Juice cartons
  • Milk cartons
  • Soup cartons

Cat Litter

  • Cat litter is classed as Pet waste and therefore needs to be disposed of in your grey wheelie bin with the general waste.

CDs

CDs can be donated at most of your local charity shops. Similarly you can give them away for free online with sites such asFreegle or Freecycle. Alternatively you could sell them online using websites such as Music Magpie.

However if you are feeling in a creative mood why not try your hand at reusing them in a different way Upcycling old CDs.

Clinical Waste

Clinical waste is waste which is produced by a resident who is self medicating a medical condition within their own home. Although legislation allows local authorities the right to charge for collections of clinical waste, Barrow Borough Council offers a free service.

Clinical waste can include :-

  • Human tissue
  • Blood or bodily fluids
  • Excretions
  • Drugs or pharmaceutical products
  • Swabs or dressings
  • Syringes, needles or other sharp instruments

To obtain a free clinical waste collection, residents are required to complete a form which must be signed by their GP/Healthcare Professional. This form can be obtained by contacting Customer Services on 01229 8786543 or downloading the form here.

Clothes & Textiles

Clothes and textiles in good condition can be reused, passed onto friends and relatives, taken to charity shops or to a jumble sale. You can also give them away for free on websites like Freegle or Freecycle. Or if you wanted to make some extra cash, you could try selling them online via the various "seek and sell" sites on Social media.

Visit the Love Your Clothes page for more information on how to reuse or repair your clothes and textiles.

INFORMATION:

  • Clothes are a major contributor to the problem of plastic in the ocean. It has been estimated that around half a million tonnes of plastic microfibres shed during the washing of synthetic textiles such as polyester, nylon, or acrylic end up in the ocean annually.
  • 35% of primary microplastics entering the ocean are released through the washing of textiles.
  • The World Bank estimates that 20% of industrial wastewater pollution worldwide originates from the textile industry. Some of these chemicals are classified as bio-accumulative and persistent, meaning that once in the environment, they will remain there for a long time.

Computers

Computers cannot be disposed of in your general waste, neither can they be recycled in your red recycling bin.

There are many ways in which you can dispose of your computer:

  • They can be taken to the HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney road  sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County Council.
  • If in working order they can be taken to a charity shop
  • If you want to get some cash for them they could be taken to your local computer exchange shop or sell them via any of the "seek and sell" platforms on social media.

Crisp Packets

  • Please put crisp packets in your general waste bin. Do not throw them in your mixed recycling bin.

These items can look like aluminium foil but are actually made from metallised plastic film. This type of material is not currently recycled so goes your general waste bin.

Crisp Tubes

  • Crisp tubes cannot be recycled in your red recycling bin at home. This is because they are made from multiple items such as paper, plastic and metal which are difficult to separate for recycling.

D

Drinking Glasses

  • Drinking glasses or wine glasses cannot be recycled in your recycling box. This is because they are made from a different type of glass which contains chemicals which might cause contamination if you put them in with your normal glass bottles and jars.

Unwanted drinking glasses can also be taken to your local charity shop.

DVDs

DVDs can be donated at most of your local charity shops. Similarly you can give them away for free online with sites such as Freegle or Freecycle. Alternatively you could sell them online using websites such as Music Magpie.

E

Egg Cartons (cardboard)

  • Your cardboard Egg cartons can go in the red recycling bin. Try and buy these cartons rather than buying polystyrene ones which are not recyclable.

Egg Shells

  • Cleaned and crushed egg shells can be added to your compost, as they contain lime which helps to reduce acidity.

INFORMATION

What can I put in my compost bin ?

Electrical Items

Electrical items come under what is known as the WEEE directive (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment directive) which came into force in 2005 and instructs that they must be disposed of accordingly.

Most appliances can  be taken to the HWRC ( Household Waste recycling Centre ) on Walney Road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County Council. For more information you can contact them on 01229 831564

Most electrical stores will offer free advice on the disposal of these items.

Energy Saving Light Bulbs

Although standard light bulbs cannot be recycled energy saving light bulbs can!

Energy efficient light bulbs are a type of fluorescent lamp and can be recycled at the local HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney road sometimes referred to as "the tip" run by the County Council.

Alternatively check your local supermarkets as some of these have collection points for Energy saving light bulbs.

The older style bulbs cannot be recycled and need to be put in your grey wheelie bin.

Engine Oil

Engine Oil can be disposed of at the HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County Council.

Envelopes

  • You can recycle envelopes (including those with a window) in your Red recycling bin at home. Alternatively you may be able to re-use the envelope again.

F

Fluorescent Tubes

Fluorescent Tubes can be taken to the HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County Council.

Foil

  • Clean aluminium foil and foil trays can be recycled in your mixed recycling bin at home or at your local Recycling Centre.
  • This does not include foil wrapped crisp packets or pet food pouches. These items can look like aluminium foil but are actually made from metallised plastic film. This type of material is not currently recycled and should be put in your general waste bin.

To find out if an item is foil, do the scrunch test. Simply scrunch the item in your hand – if it remains ‘scrunched’ it is foil and can be recycled. If it springs back it is probably metallised plastic film and not recyclable.

Food and Drink Cans

  • Empty food tins and drink cans can be recycled in your red recycling bin at home.
  • Please try and give them a quick rinse before putting them in the red bin.

Food and Drink Pouches

  • Pouches such as those used for drinks, coffee, pet food and baby food should be placed in your general waste bin.

Although these items can look like aluminium foil they are actually made from metallised plastic film. As this type of material cannot be currently recycled it should be put in your general waste bin.

TIP

A quick test to see if an item is foil or metallised plastic film is to do the "scrunch test". Simply scrunch the item in your hand – if it remains ‘scrunched’ it is foil and can be recycled. If it springs back it is probably metallised plastic film and not recyclable.

Food Tins and Drink Cans

  • Empty food tins and drink cans can be recycled in your mixed recycling bin at home.

Fridges and Freezers

Fridges and Freezers can be taken to the HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County Council.

Alternatively they can be removed under by the Borough Council as part of its Special Collection scheme (charges apply)

Furniture

If your furniture is no longer in a reusable condition it can be taken to the HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney road sometimes referred to as "the tip" run by the County Council.

Furniture can also be disposed of using the council's Special Collection scheme (charges apply).

Alternatively if you want to makes some cash then Furniture items can be sold using the many "seek and sell" platforms available on Social media as well as sites such as Freegle.

G

Gas Bottles

Gas bottles should be returned to the supplier, alternatively they can be taken to the HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County Council.

Gift Wrap

  • Plain gift wrapping paper can be recycled in your red wheelie bin.
  • If the wrapping paper is not entirely made out of paper but contains things like foil, has a plastic coating, is dyed, laminated and contains coloured shapes, glitter, plastics and other things that cannot be recycled, then it needs to go in your general waste bin.

Glass

  • Crockery glass, window glass or mirrored glass cannot be recycled in your red wheelie bin. The need to be disposed of in your grey wheelie bin or at your local HWRC (Household Waste and Recycling Centre).

Large panels of glass that do not fit in the waste bin can also be removed by using the Council's Special Collection scheme (charges apply). In this instance the glass needs to be securely taped up.

Glass Bottles and Jars

  • Glass bottles and jars can be recycled in your recycling box at home.

Please remove all the lids from your bottles and jars, these can be placed in your grey wheelie bin.

  • Remember to give the bottles and jars a quick rinse.

Green Waste

A "Garden waste club" service is provided by the Council's contractor FCC. The annual fee is £38 if you sign up online : Garden Waste Club.

Greetings Cards and Wrapping Paper

  • You can recycle greetings cards and  wrapping paper in your red recycling bin at home.
  • Remember you can only recycle greetings cards and wrapping paper if they’re entirely made out of paper. If they contain other elements such as foil, have a plastic coating, or contain non-paper decorations like glitter, and other plastics, then they cannot be recycled unless you can entirely separate the paper portion.

H

Hardcore Rubble

  • This should not be disposed of in ANYof your bins at home (general waste or recycling).
  • Hardcore and rubble cannot be disposed of using the Council's special collection scheme
  • Hardcore and rubble can be disposed of at your local HWRC (Household Waste and recycling Centre) run by the County Council.

Hazardous Waste

  • Hazardous waste is any form of waste which can harm human health or the environment, or is difficult to handle. Each of the items on the list below is now classed as hazardous waste:
  • All asbestos containing wastes
  • End of life vehicles
  • Fluorescent light tube
  • Fridges & freezers
  • Infectious clinical wastes
  • Lead acid batteries
  • TV and computer monitors
  • Waste oils

Some of these items may be taken at your local HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre).

The Borough Council will also take Fridges, Freezers and Monitors as part of its Special Collection scheme (charges apply).

I

Ink Cartridges and Toners

Most ink cartridges can be refilled with a special kit that you can buy. Alternatively you can get your cartridges and toners refilled by using stores such as Cartridge World.

Some printers manufacturers also run their own return cartridge scheme with Freepost envelopes provided allowing you to return them to the manufacturer.

Ink Cartridges can also be donated using sites such as The Recycling Factory.

INFORMATION

  • It is estimated that ink cartridges take approximately 450 years to decompose
  • Over 65 million printer cartridges are sold each year in the UK alone. Of these 65 million cartridges, only an estimated 15% are recycled or reused.

K

Kitchen Utensils

  • Kitchen utensils cannot be recycled in your red recycling bin. Please dispose of them in your grey wheelie bin.

Metal kitchen utensils can be recycled in the scrap metal container at your local HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney Road.

L

Large Electrical Items

  • Large Electrical items should not be disposed of in ANY of your bins at home (waste or recycling)
  • These items can be disposed of either at your local HWRC (Household Waste and Recycling Centre) on Walney road run by the County Council or by using the Borough Council's Special Collection scheme (charges apply).

Lids

  • The likes of plastic lids from screw-top bottles are accepted currently on the recycling scheme.
  • However lids from glass jars should be placed in the general waste bin.

Light Bulbs

You cannot recycle Standard light bulbs in your red recycling bin, please put in your grey wheelie bin.

TIP

Where possible try and use energy saving light bulbs. These can be recycled at the HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney Road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County Council . Alternatively some supermarkets have collection points for energy saving light bulbs.

M

Magazines and Catalogues

  • Magazines and catalogues can be recycled in your red recycling bin. Alternatively they can be given to Doctors' surgeries or to schools for arts and craft projects.

Mirrors

As mirrored glass is different to normal glass, such as bottles, it cannot be recycled. If it is broken it can go in your grey wheelie bin or alternatively be taken to the HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County Council.

If it is in good condition then it could be donated to one of the many charity shops or sold on live via the many "seek and sell" sites available on social media.

Mobile Phones

Mobile phones can often be traded in towards the cost of a new phone with most of the major high-street phone shops.

Similarly you could make yourself some cash via the various seek and sell sites that exist on social media or the various cash converter type shops on the high street.

N

Needles and Syringes

  • Needles and Syringes cannot be recycled.

Sharps and syringes will be collected as part of the free clinical waste service. These must be contained within the appropriate sharps box which can be obtained on prescription from the patient’s General Practitioner.

If residents are being treated in their home by a Healthcare Professional, it is the responsibility of the Healthcare Professional to remove all clinical waste which is generated as a result of that treatment.

To apply for a clinical waste collection contact the council on 01229 876543.

Newspapers

  • Newspapers can be recycled in your red wheelie bin. Please make sure they are not damp or soiled in any way.

P

Paint and paint cans

  • Paint and paint cans cannot go in your recycling. In addition do not dispose of unused paint down the drain.
  • You can dispose of Paint and paint cans at the HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and  run by the County Council.

Paper and shredded paper

  • Most types of paper can be included in your red recycling bin, this also means shredded paper but also:
  • Magazines and catalogues
  • Newspapers
  • Books
  • Envelopes and mail
  • Greeting cards

Pet Food Pouches

  • Pet food pouches are similar to those used for drinks, coffee and baby food and should be placed in your general waste bin.

Although these items can look like aluminium foil they are actually made from metallised plastic film. As this type of material cannot be currently recycled it should be put in your general waste bin.

TIP

A quick test to see if an item is foil or metallised plastic film is to do the "scrunch test". Simply scrunch the item in your hand – if it remains ‘scrunched’ it is foil and can be recycled. If it springs back it is probably metallised plastic film and not recyclable.

Pet Waste

  • Pet waste should be disposed of in your grey wheelie bin.

Photographs

  • Photographs and negatives go in your grey wheelie bin.

Pizza Boxes

  • Empty pizza boxes can be recycled in your paper and card bin at home, as long as it is not soiled. You can easily remove the greasy section of the box and discard it in your grey bin, the remaining good quality cardboard can then go in your recycling bin. Just make sure there is no food waste still in the box.

Plastic Bottles

  • Plastic bottles go in your red recycling bin and includes the following:
  • shampoo and shower gel bottles
  • cleaning product bottles
  • trigger spray bottles
  • drinks bottles

Please note that Black plastic is not accepted.

Plastic Carrier Bags

  • This is a definite "no-no". Plastic carrier bags are the number one contaminant in Barrow's recycling. They should be disposed of in your grey wheelie bin.

While it is understandable that some people will use plastic carrier bags to transfer their recyclates from the house to the bin, either re-use the plastic bag or simply empty the recyclable contents of the bag into the bin and then simply put the bag into the grey wheelie bin.

Plastic Film

  • Plastic film goes in your grey wheelie bin. This includes things like, cling film, film on top of ready meals and plastic wrapping.

Plastic Packaging

  • Plastic packaging is another major contaminant in Barrow's recycling scheme and should go in your general waste bin. This include packaging from things like bread, frozen food and fresh vegetables.

Plastic Pots

  • Plastic pots such as Yoghurt pots, margarine tubs can go in your Red recycling bin.

Please note that Black plastic is not accepted

Polystyrene

  • Polystyrene cannot be recycled and has to go into your grey wheelie bin. This includes things like take-away plates and containers as well as packaging and polystyrene / foam "chips".

Pyrex Glass

  • Pyrex ovenware is a type of glass but it has been specially treated in the manufacturing process to withstand high temperatures. Therefore, it melts at a different temperature during the recycling process, making it non-recyclable.

S

Scrap Metal

Scrap metal does not go in your red recycling bin. However you can take scrap metal to the HWRC (Household Waste recycling Centre) on Walney road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County Council.

Shampoo and Shower Gel Bottles

  • Shampoo and shower gel bottles can go in your Red recycling bin. This includes  bottles such as, cleaning product bottles, trigger spray bottles, drinks and milk bottles.

Remove any "hard" plastic  such as lids before putting them in your mixed recycling bin.

Please note that Black plastic is not accepted.

Sharps

  • Sharps and syringes will be collected as part of the free clinical waste service. These must be contained within the appropriate sharps box which can be obtained on prescription from the patient’s General Practitioner.

If residents are being treated in their home by a Healthcare Professional, it is the responsibility of the Healthcare Professional to remove all clinical waste which is generated as a result of that treatment.

To obtain a free clinical waste collection, residents are required to complete a form which must be signed by their GP/Healthcare Professional. This form can be obtained by contacting Customer Services on 01229 876543.

Shoes

  • Shoes cannot be recycled using the Council's kerbside recycling collection. However there are a number of options for recycling shoes:
  • Take them to your local charity shop
  • The HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County Council has a number of shoe recycling banks
  • Some of the larger supermarkets also have shoe recycling banks

Shredded Paper

  • Shredded paper can be recycled and goes in you r red wheelie bin. Please make sure you only empty the shredded paper into the bin and not the container you collected it in, unless of course that is also recyclable.

TIP

If you are emptying your shredded paper into the bin try and make sure it is towards the bottom of the bin. This avoids shredded paper being blown everywhere when the wheelie bin lid is opened for emptying.

Small Electrical Items

Electrical items whether they are large or small can be taken to the HWRC (Household Waste recycling Centre) at Walney Road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the county council. For further information they can be contacted on  01229 831564

Alternatively if it is still in good working order you could take it to a local reuse shop or try selling it on one of the many sites available on social media (e.g. Freecycle or Freegle).

Sofa Settees

Sofa settees cannot be recycled via the council's kerbside recycling collection. However they can be taken away using the council's £10 special collection. To arrange a collection please ring 01229 876543.

Straws

  • Plastic straws cannot be recycled and should go in your grey wheelie bin.

As an alternative consider using Metal Straws.

T

Tablets

Tablets or tablet computers are classed as WEEE items (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment) and can be recycled at the HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County council.

Alternatively if they are in working order they could be resold via a reuse shop or through one of the many "seek and sell" sites available on the internet and social media.

Tea and Coffee Grounds

  • Tea (including tea bags) and Coffee grounds cannot be recycled and should be placed in your grey wheelie bin.
  • However they can be used in a compost bin if you have one as long as they are in the correct proportions.

What can I compost?

Tetra Pak

  • Tetra Pak juice and milk cartons (or similar) can be recycled and should be placed in your red wheelie bin.

DID YOU KNOW ?

Tetra Pak is not actually the name of the type of packaging used but rather it is actually the name of the Company.

However the company started with an innovative idea of Erik Wallenberg to make a tetrahedron shaped plastic coated container, thus the name of the company comes from this idea

Tissues

  • Although tissues are made of paper, the fibres they are made of are not of a high enough quality to be recycled. Please place your tissues in your grey wheelie bin.

TVs

There are a number of ways you can recycle your TV:

  • You can have them taken away using the Council's £10 special collection service. To arrange a collection please ring the Customer Service team on 01229 876543.
  • TVs can also be taken to the HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney road and run by the County Council.
  • Some retailers will arrange to take away your old TV if you have purchased a new one through them.

Tyres

We do not collect any vehicle tyres as part of any of our services, all tyre replacement companies have the facility to send old tyres away for reprocessing.

Tyres can be recycled at the HWRC (Household Waste Recycling Centre) on Walney road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County Council.

Out of the 50 million used tyres that are currently collected each year, 34 per cent are used in new products, 25 per cent are used as energy sources (typically in cement and lime kilns), 6 per cent are used in retreading, 10 per cent are used in landfill engineering and the remaining 25 per cent are reused.

See what tyres can be made into.

W

WEEE Items

Electrical items come under what is known as the WEEE directive (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment directive) which came into force in 2005 and instructs that they must be disposed of accordingly.

Most appliances can  be taken to the HWRC ( Household Waste recycling Centre ) on Walney Road sometimes referred to as "the tip" and run by the County Council. For more information you can contact them on 01229 831564

Most electrical stores will offer free advice on the disposal of these items.

Wet Wipes

  • Wet wipes such as baby wipes, cosmetic wipes, bathroom cleaning wipes are not recyclable. Please put them in your grey waste bin.

Also even if the packaging says the wipes can be flushed away down the toilet, still the best way of disposing of them is in the grey waste bin. Where possible try and buy ones that are biodegradable or compostable.

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