Make recycling your New Year’s resolution


Release date: 3 January 2020

With Christmas trees, wrapping paper and empty boxes to dispose of, January is the busiest time of the year for recycling in West Sussex.

Residents recycled 10,000 tonnes of paper and card and 1,700 tonnes of electrical items in the first three months of 2019.

This year people are being reminded which items can be recycled and where to put them.

Christmas materials that can be recycled in your home recycling bin include:

  • Christmas cards
  • Cardboard boxes and packaging
  • Plastic pots, tubs, and trays
  • Aluminium foil, cans, pie cases and food trays
  • Bottles (both plastic and glass)
  • Glass jars
  • Wrapping paper (although remember to do a ‘scrunch test’!)

Foil and metallic wrapping paper cannot be recycled, but if you’re unsure whether you can recycle other wrapping paper you can do the ‘scrunch test’. If the paper stays scrunched then it’s okay to go in the recycling. If it springs open then unfortunately it can’t be recycled.

Real Christmas trees can be taken to your local Household Waste Recycling Site (HWRS) and placed in with the garden waste to ensure it is recycled into compost. If you live in Adur, Arun, Chichester, Crawley, Horsham or Worthing areas, and subscribe to a garden waste collection, you can place your real Christmas tree out for collection. In Mid Sussex, you can take your real Christmas tree to a designated collection point for recycling. For more information please check with your local district or borough council.

Old electrical and electronic items including tablets, cameras and Christmas lights can also all be recycled free of charge at one of the sites. Please ensure they are placed in the designated area rather than in with general rubbish. There is also a designated bin for recycling batteries at the HWRS, as these can cause fires if put in with general waste.

Unwanted toys and clothing can be donated to charity or taken to your nearest HWRS for reuse or recycling.

Residents are reminded that they will now need to show ID - for example a driving licence or utility bill – when visiting any of the HWRSs in West Sussex.

Deborah Urquhart, West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member for Environment, said: “Christmas cards and wrapping paper can typically be put in your home recycling bins, so long as it passes the scrunch test, along with many other items. You can help us by making sure your recycling is kept clean, dry and loose. If you’re unsure what can be recycled please go online to the West Sussex recycles website.

“If visiting your local Household Waste Recycling Site - just remember to bring along some ID like a driving licence or a utility bill to show you live within West Sussex.”

For more information about what can and cannot be recycled, visit:

More tips on reducing your waste and recycling can be found by following @WSrecycles on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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