A Merry Christmas from Lambeth Environment!

December 19, 2014

This will be our last post for 2014, so there’s just time to say a big thank you for reading, we hope you’ve enjoyed our posts and we hope you’ll stay with us for 2015!

Recycling and waste at Christmas

Our collection days are changing slightly over the festive period, so make sure you don’t miss yours. Also find out where you can recycle your Christmas tree.

Even with the very best intentions most of us create extra waste over Christmas, so here are some tips to help reduce the amount you throw away.


Judging how much food to buy, especially if you are catering for more than usual, can be difficult. The Love Food Hate Waste Portion Planner will help you to buy and cook the right amount – preventing waste and saving you money. They also have some great recipes for using up leftovers from Christmas dinner.

For any food that can’t be eaten e.g. bones, remember to use the food waste collection service!

Wrapping paper

As a nation, we use tonnes of it every year and most of it goes straight into the recycling bin.

Instead of using wrapping paper, you could also wrap gifts in newspaper. With a bit of creativity, they can look really lovely!


You can also wrap your presents in fabric. The technique which originated in Japan, is called Furushiki. Large square scarfs are perfect and can then be worn by the recipient.

Get crafty

Just search recycled Christmas decorations online and you’ll find hundreds of really great ideas!

Here are a couple of my favourites!

cork tree

Cork Christmas Tree











Wreath made from recycled Christmas cards


















There’s no limit to the amount you can put out for collection in your clear sack or shared recycling bin. So remember to recycle everything you can!

Your guide to recycling in Lambeth this Christmas

December 23, 2013

Christmas TreeCards

These can go in your recycling sack or shared recycling bin. You can also take them to your local M&S, where they will be recycled in support of the Woodland Trust. Last year, 10 million cards were collected and 10,000 trees planted as a result!

Alternatively, you can get crafty and make tags for next year’s presents!

Wrapping  paper

Once your presents have been unwrapped, remember to put the wrapping paper in your recycling sack or shared recycling bin. Unfortunately, the metallic-style paper cannot be recycled.


When you’re catering for guests, it’s often difficult to know how much to cook.  If you don’t feel like eating turkey for the whole of January, a good rule of thumb is to allow 1lb per person. If you do have left over food, have a look at www.lovefoodhatewaste.com for some great leftover recipes.

Don’t forget the new food waste collection service! You can put all of the bones, peelings and scraps from plates into your caddy.

Cooking  oil

Once you’ve cooked dinner, allow the fat to cool down and pour it into a plastic bottle. Drop it into one of our on-street oil banks where it will be recycled into biodiesel!


When you’ve opened your presents and prepared the food, there is likely to be a lot of packaging ready for recycling. You can use your recycling sack or shared recycling bin to recycle the following:

  • Paper and cardboard
  • Glass bottles and jars
  • Cans and tins
  • Plastic bottles and plastic pots, tubs and trays
  • Cartons (tetra paks)

You can put out as much recycling for collection as you need to. If you are running short of recycling sacks, you can collect more from your local library or order more online.

Christmas trees

We’ll be collecting Christmas trees as usual this year. To recycle your tree, put it out on your normal collection day throughout January, starting from 6 January 2014.

You can also take your tree to the following sites between 6 January and 13 January 2014.

• Clapham Common, Windmill Drive, SW4

• Streatham Common, rear of Upper Common car park, SW16

• Archbishops Park, Carlisle Lane, SE1

• Lambeth Reuse and Recycling Centre, Vale Street, SE27 9PA (closed Tuesday and Wednesday)


If you receive new electrical items for Christmas, don’t let the old ones gather dust. If they are in good working order consider donating them to a local charity. If they no longer work, you can recycle them in one of our on-street WEEE banks.


Most of us receive clothes at Christmas. If you need to make room in your wardrobe for the new additions, remember to donate your worn clothes to your local charity shop or send them for reuse in one of our on-street textile banks. Even if the clothes are passed their best, please still put them in one of our banks. Whatever isn’t suitable for reuse will be recycled.

Reuse and recycling centres

If you have additional recycling, you can take it to one of our reuse and recycling centres. You can also recycle a range of additional materials at these sites from bikes and batteries through to white goods. Please check the materials list for each site before visiting.

 Wishing you all a very happy and restful break! 

Recycle your Christmas tree

January 2, 2013

Christmas TreeThe crackers have all been pulled and it’s now time to put Christmas behind us as we stumble, dazed but optimistic, into another new year. But as we try to look bravely forward one thing still tugs us back: there, in the corner of the room, our once lushly foliaged and richly decorated tree is unapologetically shedding needles all over the floor and getting in everyone’s way.

But there is hope.

What if your tree has not, as you had suspected, reached the end of its useful life? What if it could be recycled, and fed back into the earth to nourish future generations of Brussels sprouts and red cabbages?  Well, it can!

If you’re fortunate enough to live in Lambeth, and you have a real* Christmas tree that you’re keen to see the back of and your rubbish is collected from a wheelie bin, you can put your tree out with your other rubbish on the week beginning 7 January 2013. (The same conditions apply to trees as to your bin, so please don’t put your tree outside until the evening before your collection day.)

If you live on a Lambeth Living estate you can put your tree in your bulky waste collection point between 7 January and 11 January.

Now here’s an interesting thing: you won’t find much growing on the floor of a pine forest because pine is very acidic. For this reason, after your Christmas tree has been chopped up into very small pieces it will be mixed with other green waste to make it suitable for use as a soil improver that will be distributed to farms. So by the time the first Christmas adverts appear on TV (probably in May) your tree may well be helping to grow the veggies we’ll be eating next December. Isn’t that a nice thought?

*Real trees only, please! Tinsel does not compost well, and non-biodegradable trees can be used again next year!


Happy Christmas from your Recycling Team!

December 21, 2012

The festive season is finally upon us and if you’re anything like me, there’s still a lot to be done!

Still, there’s plenty of help out there. If you’ve not wrapped your gifts yet, how about having a go at Furoshiki? It’s really easy as this video shows and is a great alternative to wrapping paper. 

If you’re in charge of the food this year, why not have a look at the Love Food Hate Waste website. You’ll find really helpful information on storing food, portion sizes and using up your leftovers. There’s also some great money saving tips, which are particularly useful at this time of year.

If you’re already considering your New Year’s resolutions, don’t forget the Zero Waste Challenge that’s taking place throughout January. A great way to start 2013 and an opportunity to raise money for charity.

Finally, please don’t forget to use your orange bag or estate recycling bin to recycle over the holidays. You can find out what you can recycle from home and at your local recycling point on our website.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!