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Recycling bin collections

Your household recycling will be collected every 2 weeks.

Find out what happens to recycling in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole.

Depending on your circumstances, each household has been allocated one of the following two options:

  • standard: 240 litre wheelie bin
  • bag and box: 2 boxes with lids for mixed recycling

Using your household recycling bin

Please make sure you put your bin out by 5am on your collection day.

Make sure the lid is closed and the bin is at the edge of your property, where the waste collection team can see it from the road and collect it easily. Do not put out any extra rubbish bags for collection.

Please put items in loose, do not bag them.

If your bin is too heavy to be wheeled to the back of our collection vehicle, we will not be able to empty it.

What you can put in your household recycling bin

Paper and cardboard, including:

  • wrapping paper (not foil based)
  • newspapers
  • envelopes
  • directories
  • magazines
  • shredded paper (small quantities - paper wrapped/bagged to stop escape)
  • cereal boxes
  • greetings cards
  • cardboard (including corrugated card)
  • photos

Most rigid household plastics (any colour) from food, drink and household products, including:

  • plastic bottles (including milk, soft drinks, shampoo, shower gel and cleaning products)
  • plastic pots (including yoghurt, cream and soup)
  • plastic tubs (including margarine, butter and ice cream)
  • plastic trays (any colour, including fruit and vegetable punnets)
  • plastic lids (they must be placed back on the plastic bottles, pots and tubs)

Household metal packaging:

  • tins and cans
  • aerosols (including deodorant, hairspray and furniture polish)
  • aluminium foil
  • metal lids

Tetra Pak cartons


  • glass bottles and jars

Items should be clean, dry and empty. This is very important so that entire loads of good recycling are not rejected.

What you cannot put in your household recycling bin

  • plastic/carrier bags (including compostable/biodegradable types)
  • plastic film
  • tissues and paper towels
  • disposable nappies
  • paper cups
  • polystyrene
  • commercial waste
  • crisp packets
  • clothes and textiles
  • plant pots and seed trays
  • food waste (use brown food waste container)
  • garden waste
  • clinical waste (such as syringes/medical sharps)
  • electrical items
  • batteries (put in carrier bag and place on top of the recycling bin on collection day)
  • broken glass
  • light bulbs
  • oven proof glass (for example, Pyrex)
  • sheet glass and windowpanes
  • toothpaste tubes
  • lateral flow testing kit (the test, plastic packaging and bag provided)
  • personal protective equipment (masks and gloves)
  • hard plastics, for example toys and buckets
  • general rubbish

For items not permitted in your collection like flexible plastics and crisp packets, please use the Recycle Now locator to find out where you can take them.

More information about recycling bin collections can be found in our waste collection guidance.

Recycling household batteries

You can recycle household batteries at the kerbside alongside your other recycling. Please do not put these extra items inside your recycling, instead use a carrier bag and leave them next to or on the lid of your recycling bin for collection on your recycling day.

It is important not to put batteries in with your other recycling. Batteries need to be collected, transported and recycled separately to make sure the heavy metals they contain (for example, nickel, cadmium) do not leak out, causing pollution in the local environment or damage to nearby wildlife and people.

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