Jingle bells - recycle well, Christmas is on its way!

Hounslow Council is encouraging residents to keep up their environmental efforts over the festive season, in order to cut down on seasonal waste by recycling all they can!

Published: Wednesday, 11th December 2019

Image of Christmas Dinner

Christmas can often be a time of indulgence and after the gifts are unwrapped and the food is eaten, the festivities can leave us with a lot of waste. Hounslow Council wants to help residents do the right thing by recycling as much of this waste as possible. 

Collection days will be subject to temporary change over Christmas and New Year, with the usual collection schedule resuming on Monday 13 January. Residents who live in houses will be most affected, so look out for the information being attached to your black wheeled bin over coming weeks in addition to the dedicated web pages. 

The festive period presents its own challenges as to what can and cannot be recycled e.g. did you know that you can’t recycle foil or plastic wrapping? Gift wrap and cards with glitter or embellishments can’t currently be recycled either and might contaminate our collections. If in doubt, do the scrunch test with wrapping paper – scrunch some of the wrapping in your hand. If it bounces back – it can’t be recycled. If it doesn’t, it can be recycled, but remove any sticky tape and decorations before placing into recycling.

Additionally, be careful to remove any plastic sections from packaging e.g. see-through panels on the front of toy packaging. These can’t be recycled, but we can take the cardboard and other recyclable sections. Ordering items online usually results in having plenty of cardboard, so please recycle that too. All we ask is that you flatten boxes and break them down so the cardboard sheets don’t exceed 70cm x 70cm – this ensures it will fit through the slots on our recycling trucks.

When acquiring new gadgets and electrical items such as kettles, alarm clocks, electric shavers this Christmas – if you live in a house, remember that Hounslow Council will collect any unwanted small electrical (WEEE) items for recycling, please put these in a separate bag alongside your recycling on collection day (but not a black bin bag!) please remove all batteries first, these can be disposed at local retailers that sell batteries.

Once the festive period has passed, Hounslow Council will collect your Christmas tree (real ones of course!) provided you receive a kerbside recycling service. Although, the garden waste service will be suspended, trees will still be collected from streets on usual garden waste collection days (so not the black wheeled bin collection days) for two weeks from 6 January – just remove all decorations and pots   and leave out on your respective recycling day. 

Christmas trees can also be dropped off at designated points at; Hanworth Air Park, Hounslow Heath, Redlees Park, Gunnersbury Park and Bedfont Lakes throughout January.

Residents who live in flats can also recycle electrical items and other materials for free by visiting their nearest west London recycling centre, be sure to check opening times before visiting as these will vary over Christmas and New Year. Do check with your managing agent and/or landlord on how to dispose of your Christmas tree or alternatively you can drop it off at any of the above drop-off points throughout January.

Victoria Lawson, Executive Director of Environment, Culture and Customer Services, London Borough of Hounslow said:

“Christmas and the New Year is a busy time of the year, when we tend to have more waste and opportunities to recycle, so we want to make it as easy as possible for residents to understand how they can recycle efficiently.  

“We have also published when we will be collecting recycling and waste over this period, including any real Christmas trees.  By providing this guidance, we hope this helps residents waste less and recycle more in the coming weeks.”

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