Recycle your rigid plastics

RESIDENTS can now recycle rigid plastics as part of a new recycling scheme being launched across all of Cambridgeshire County Council’s nine Household Recycling Centres.

The new scheme is being introduced after feedback from residents who said they wanted more opportunities to recycle bigger, bulkier plastics which have come to the end of their useful life.

This includes rigid plastics such as corrugated pipe, buckets, dustbins, water butts, garden furniture, plant pots, and non-electrical children’s toys. However, materials such as plastic bottles, yoghurt pots, ice cream tubs, PVC pipes and UPVC door and window frames are not suitable.

The County Council, in partnership with Waterbeach-based waste management company AmeyCespa, successfully trialled the new scheme earlier this year at Milton and Grunty Fen recycling centres. The trial netted nearly 27 tonnes of rigid plastics in three months. All of the rigid plastics collected were sent for recycling to a local company, Data Shredders, which is based in Wimblington near March.

Councillor Mathew Shuter, Cabinet Member for Enterprise at Cambridgeshire County Council said: “We are really pleased to be able offer Cambridgeshire residents this new recycling service. This new service will help to recycle as much as 500 tonnes of rigid plastics a year which means we can save over £27,000 in landfill tax annually. We can then invest this money in important services for the local community.”

Jemma Alston, Contracts Manager for AmeyCespa said: “The success of the trial collections were due to the fact that our recycling centres staff have been trained as to which rigid plastics are suitable for recycling, so they can sort these materials out from other waste and put them into the recycling banks. The recycling industry only wants specific types of rigid plastics and we were able to supply them with high quality material, which has meant they have asked if we can supply them with more. We will maintain this procedure when the scheme expands to all nine household recycling centres.

“We would ask members of the public who take rigid plastics to any of the recycling centres to keep the material separate from other waste and inform our site staff they have these types of plastic. Our staff will then ensure the plastics are placed into the recycling containers, so we can maintain the high quality of plastics collected.”

The Household Recycling Centres in Cambridgeshire are managed by AmeyCespa as part of its multi-million pound 28-year waste management contract with the County Council.

For more information about what can be recycled at your local recycling centre, go to and follow the links.