Copeland Council is saying a huge thank you to its residents for recycling – and encouraging them to continue through the festive season.
Community Services Manager, Shirley Procter-Dow, took up her role in the summer and has been impressed at how many locals make the most of the council’s kerbside recycling service. She said: “We know it’s been a difficult year in so many ways for residents and the fact that most people have continued to recycle is outstanding.
“In common with all councils, the pandemic has given us lots of challenges, and residents have been patient when they have perhaps had to wait for their collection. Thank you for that.
“Because councils are not immune to the impact of the pandemic, we are having to manage with fewer people. Our crews are working hard – often on evenings or weekends, to continue providing the service.
“We’ve also had lots more recycling than usual - an increase of 35 per cent - so we have to empty our lorries more often.”
This festive season, the council is suggesting ways residents can help the service operate smoothly.
Shirley said: “Like most councils we can’t accept wrapping paper. With the increase in foil, glitter and plastic in gift wrap, the collections simply become too contaminated with unrecyclable paper, and our recycling partner can no longer accept it. We’d suggest finding new and different ways to wrap that create less waste paper. We’ll be sharing ideas for this on our social media channels as we approach Christmas.”
Residents can also be a big help when it comes to card. “Only put out as much card as will fit in your white bag,” said Shirley. “You can cut it into smaller pieces and flatten it to get more in. We know lots of people will be getting online purchases at the moment, and compressing card is one of the most helpful things you can do – it means our vehicle can hold a lot more and we can continue collecting instead of going to drop it off at the transfer station.”
“For the same reason, crushing cans and plastic containers is a good idea. It also means the recycling takes up less space while you are storing it for your next collection.”
The council is also encouraging people to use recycling centres (or ‘bring’ sites), but with a note of caution.
“Our bring sites will be open and can be useful when people have a lot more recycling than usual,” said Shirley, “but bear in mind that the bring sites will also be under more pressure than usual and may fill up quicker. If this is the case, please don’t leave materials beside the banks. This can cause serious litter issues.”
Shirley added: “All our staff would like to thank everyone for continuing to recycle through this difficult time. We hope everyone has a lovely Christmas, and is ready to recycle again in 2021.”
Picture shows Copeland's Community Services Manager Shirley Procter-Dow (R) and Recycling Officer Jan Boniface gearing up for festive recycling. Courtesy of Copeland Borough Council.