Visit the recycling centre

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Visit the recycling centre

Wednesday September 11, 2013

Residents are being invited on a free trip to the local recycling centre this month.

Following on from successful trips earlier this year, Hammersmith & Fulham Council is offering residents the chance to see what happens to their recycling after it’s been collected by the council.

Places are available for a tour on Friday September 27 to the material recovery facility (MRF) in Smugglers Way, Wandsworth, where recycling from the borough’s Smart Banks and Smart Sacks is sorted and separated.

The tour starts at 10.30am and lasts an hour and a half. Free transport will be available from Hammersmith Town Hall, King Street, at 10am, returning to the same point at around 12.30pm.

The maximum number of people per tour is 10 and places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. To book, email with your name and contact details.

The tour comes as residents in H&F begin receiving new clear sacks for their recycling, which is hoped will reduce the amount of contaminated recycling – waste that can’t be recycled – found in residents’ sacks. Contaminated recycling is incredibly expensive to dispose of.

It costs £24.50 to recycle a tonne of clean and dry recycling, while it costs five times as much to incinerate the same amount of rubbish, at £145, while it costs a staggering £169.50 to get rid of a tonne of contaminated recyclables.

Cllr Greg Smith, cabinet member for residents’ services and deputy leader of H&F Council, said: “H&F has one of the lowest council tax charges in the country and we want to keep it that way. The council has to pay nearly seven times as much to incinerate a tonne of contaminate recycling  than to recycle a tonne of clean and dry recycling. That’s even more than it costs to incinerate a black bag of rubbish! So our message to residents is simple – they can stop burning their money by recycling properly.

“At the moment, some residents are putting the wrong items in their recycling sacks and if contamination spreads throughout the whole load then absolutely nothing can be recycled – it’s such a waste. The clear sack is going to make it even easier for people to recycle as you can see exactly what you are putting in the sack, and if everyone recycles correctly, that will mean huge savings for the council and, ultimately, for our taxpayers.

“A tour of the MRF is a real eye-opener to the amount of waste that is thrown away every day, and I hope as many residents as possible sign up for these interesting visits.”

Some items, like shredded paper, clothes or plastic bags are not easily recycled, as they can cause problems like getting caught in machinery or contaminate other recyclable materials.

Once recycling has been organised into groups of materials, using a variety of high-tech equipment, it is then sent to processing facilities to be made into new products – anything from glass jars and bottles to clothing like fleece jackets and hats, or fibre filling for sleeping bags and duvets.

The following items, which must be clean and dry, can be recycled at Smart Banks or in the clear Smart Sacks:

  • Paper, card and cardboard
  • Glass bottles and jars
  • Cans, tins and empty aerosols
  • Plastic bottles, pots, tubs and trays, including yoghurt pots
  • Cartons

Please remember to keep the following items out:

  • Shredded paper
  • Electricals and cables
  • Clothes, shoes and textiles
  • Food waste
  • All plastics not listed above e.g. bags and film

Smart Sacks and Smart Banks should not be used for normal rubbish, and residents using Smart Banks should put their items in loose, using a reusable bag rather than using black sacks or plastic bags.

For more information on what you can and can’t recycle, visit:

For more information on the recycling plant at Smugglers Way, visit:

» Send us your comments now

I have two empty helium gas containers left by the previous house occupant. It says on the container that they should be taken to the "Local Amenities Centre". Could you advise the closest "Local Amenities centre" to W12 8EU. Alternately can I put them in the recycle bin?
Many thanks
From Kate on 11/11/2013 at 10:43
I was wondering if another one of these tours is being planned at all? I have just read the post and I would be interested in seeing how it really works. In an attempt to improve my recycling methods.
I was also wondering how I should deal with items that consist of more than one material type? Many items contain more than one variety of plastic and other items (such as Pringles crisp tubes) contain a mixture of both cardboard sides and metal bottom.
From Steve on 23/10/2013 at 12:39
I would encourage all and sundry to recycle but the Council make it difficult when I am always having to obtain the orange bags myself - please can we have more.
From CB on 16/09/2013 at 09:05
I find it confusing as to which plastic things can be recycled. I only recycle plastic containers that have the recycling emblem but I am not sure that all these plastic containers are the ones that H&F accepts. I put shredded paper in my bags (seldom and not much) until I read that this was not acceptable. I had no idea that this paper was not considered paper, though when I read an explanation why it wasn't, I understood. I really try to be obsessive about recycling but I fear I may be putting some plastic in my sack that is not acceptabel...
From Suzanne on 14/09/2013 at 11:15


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