Changes to bin collections frequently asked questions


What day will my rubbish and recycling get collected?

We'll be writing to you during April to let you know which week your brown and green bins will be emptied and remind you what can be recycled. You can also check your bin day.

What day will my garden waste be collected?

The letter we send you in April will tell you what your new garden waste collection day will be.  A maximum of four garden waste bags will be collected from each property from 8 May 2017. 

I have a 140L bin; can I have a larger bin?

As this is a change of service we're making to increase our recycling and reduce the amount of non recycling waste, we will exchange smaller 140L green bins for a 240L green bin - there is a £15 delivery fee, although you can collect one for free from Prince Rock Depot. Please call Customer Services on 01752 668000.

We're asking you to try and adapt to the changes with your existing brown bin.

If you have tried to manage with a brown 140ltr bin and despite recycling more are still not managing, we'll refer you to a recycling officer who will contact you to see how else we can help.

I live in a bagged waste area and I only have two brown and two green bags – can I have some more please?

Some areas have bagged collections because there are access issues for the vehicles and space issues for residents.

We'll provide one additional green bag. You can ask to have an additional bag through Self Service or by calling customer services on 01752 668000. 

If you have tried to manage with your existing brown bags and despite recycling more and not managing, we will refer you to a recycling officer who will contact you to see how else we can help.

There are currently no plans to change these areas to wheeled bins.

Can I have an extra bin? I’m worried I won’t be able to fit all my rubbish and/or recyclables into one bin

You should be able to fit all of your recyclables and rubbish into the bins provided.

At this stage we are asking you to carry on using the bin you have for now. If you have a large family – ie over six people – or exceptional circumstances, we'll consider providing more, but need to know a little more about your situation. For example, if there are two or more children in nappies in a smaller family we will refer you to our recycling officers who will assess how best to help you.

We're running recycling roadshows across the city to help residents recycle more – more information about these can be found on our Plymouth Newsroom. We also have information about what Plymouth recycles and what goes in each bin.

What does bringing my bin to the kerb mean?

People living in some areas are being asked to put their bins at the kerb rather than at the boundary of their property. The kerb is the edge of the pavement but not on the road.  Putting the bins closer to the road means our crews will be able to work more efficiently, particularly on long roads.

What can I put into the recycling bin?

Read what goes in each bin for more information about what you can and can’t put in your green bin.

I have had a furniture delivery and have lots of cardboard boxes that I would like to recycle; can I put them out with my green bin?

You could reduce its size by flattening and putting it in your recycling bin or you can take it to Chelson Meadow or Weston Mill to be recycled.


Won’t alternate weekly collections mean my bins will start to smell or that rats will be attracted to my bin?

You can help keep your street clean and prevent your bin from smelling by:

  • Remembering to put the right bin out on the right week
  • Using bags in your brown bin
  • Wrapping any wet and smelly rubbish (this also helps avoid flies)
  • Double-wrapping nappies and pet waste
  • Keeping bin lids closed
  • Not storing rubbish beside bins

Alternate weekly collections in other areas have not experienced problems, provided residents follow these measures. 

I’m unable to put out my wheeled bins; will I still have an assisted collection?

We'll continue to offer assistance for those residents who are eligible and you will receive a letter in April confirming this. Assisted collection arrangements will be reviewed in July to make sure that people who are eligible and still need a collection receive one.

We have a lot of healthcare waste, such as incontinence pads and catheters. I’m worried we will not be able to store this properly in between collections?

We understand there will always be people with very specific needs. If you're experiencing problems get in touch, with more details about your current bin arrangements and we'll send a recycling officer or team leader to discuss a more individual solution with you.

Won’t alternate weekly collections encourage fly tipping?

Experience from other councils that have introduced alternate weekly collections show no increase in fly tipping. Enforcement measures are already in place to deal with fly tipping and we will increase our monitoring and enforcement.

Will the council be introducing food waste collections too?

Currently, there are no plans to introduce a household food waste collection. In the meantime, we will continue to promote the Love Food Hate Waste campaign which gives lots of useful tips about food waste and our home composting scheme.

Will I receive a reduction in my Council Tax as I'm getting a reduced service? No, there will not be a reduction in the volume of waste being collected. Council Tax funds a multitude of services, waste collection is only a small part of the overall charge.