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How to put your bins out (guidance)

How is rubbish collected?

Rubbish, recycling and garden waste are collected from bins by the council's bin lorries.

Most properties have a black bin (rubbish), a blue lidded bin (recycling), and a green bin (garden waste).

Some properties have a communal refuse bin (black lid) and/or a communal recycling bin (blue lid). Other properties use black sacks for refuse and clear sacks for recycling.

When is rubbish collected?

Collections take place from Tuesday to Friday. You can find your collection dates by looking up your bin collection calendar.

Refuse and recycling are collected all year round, whereas green waste isn't collected between December and April. You'll be able to see on your bin collection calendar when your last green waste collection will be.

What can I put out for collection?

See What goes in my bins? for a full list of which items you can put out for collection.

Please don't put hot ashes, corrosive substances, hazardous materials, or heavy items such as soil or rubble, in the bin.

When should I put my rubbish out?

You should place your wheeled bin or sacks at the kerbside by 7am on your collection day.

How should my rubbish be presented?

Your rubbish should be completely contained within your wheeled bin or sacks.

If you're using a wheeled bin:

  • the lid of the bin must be fully closed
  • you shouldn't have left any excess waste (whether in bin bags or not) next to it
  • rubbish (black refuse bin) should be contained in bin bags, but recycling (blue lid bin) and garden waste (green bin) should be left loose inside the bin
  • if possible, you should place the handles of the bin towards the highway
  • you shouldn't leave your bin out on the pavement after it's been emptied

If you're using black refuse sacks:

  • you should only use one per collection

Why wasn't my rubbish collected?

Often, we're unable to empty people's bins because you've left out more rubbish than we're able to collect, for example, you've left extra bin bags beside the wheeled bin. In these cases, we won't collect the rubbish until it's presented in the correct way (see above).

Sometimes we're not able to empty your bin because of operational issues, like one of our bin lorries breaking down. When this happens we'll do our best to empty the missed bins at the earliest possible opportunity, usually the next day.

In some areas, where the roads are narrower, we might not be able to drive the bin lorry down the road if there are cars parked on both sides.

How can I let you know that my rubbish wasn't collected?

You can report a missed collection to us online. Before you do this, please make sure that your waste is presented correctly (see above) – you shouldn't report a missed collection to us if it was missed because you left out too much waste.

What do I put in which bin?

See What goes in my bins? for a full list of what should be placed into black (refuse), blue lid (recycling), and green (garden waste) bins.

I've lost my bin

If your bin has gone missing, been stolen, or been irreparably damaged, you can request a new one. You may be charged for some requests.

I need more refuse / recycling sacks

You can request more clear recycling sacks online.

If you need more black refuse sacks, you'll need to buy them yourself, but you shouldn't put out more than one sack per week.

I can't put my bin out

If you find it difficult to put your bin out, you may be eligible for the assisted collection service. Reasons you might be eligible for the service include: being a senior citizen, or having a medical condition or disability.

I have too much rubbish

If you have too much rubbish, have you checked that you're recycling as much as you can?

If you have your own garden, have you considered composting to reduce the amount of food and garden waste you're throwing out?

If you still have too many bags of refuse, you can request a bulky waste collection. You're only allowed a maximum of two bulky waste collections every month, and they shouldn't be used as a long term solution to having too much waste.

My rubbish won't fit in my bin

If you have an item, or items, of rubbish which won't fit into your bin, you can request a bulky waste collection.

If the item is recyclable, you can also take it to the Household Waste Recycling Centre at Haverton Hill.

If the item is a piece of furniture in good condition, you could donate it to the British Heart Foundation or Shelter.