Recycling can be placed out for collection in any suitable plastic container, Tendring residents are being reminded.

An unprecedented demand for official Tendring District Council (TDC) recycling boxes means stocks are running low, so to ensure households can still have their recycling collected they are being reminded that any appropriate box can be used.

The council completely stocked its warehouse with red and green recycling boxes ahead of the roll-out of wheelie bins across the district in anticipation of a surge in demand, but despite additional deliveries suppliers are now unable to keep up with the level of uptake from residents. TDC estimates it will have run out of the recycling boxes by the end of this week, and although more have been ordered additional stock will not arrive until the end of July.

Since the beginning of the wheeled bin roll-out on June 10, it is estimated that more than 10,000 recycling boxes have been claimed by residents – compared with only around 30,000 over the last seven years of the old waste service – an early sign of the scheme’s success. Food waste caddies remain in stock, and can be collected from stockists across the district.

Wheelie bins are in the process of being issued to almost 90% of the district, more than 57,000 households, the majority of the district, who once they receive their bin will move onto fortnightly collections of ‘black bag’ waste. Only the bins, and no side waste, will be collected – unless residents have an exemption, issued due to the size of the household or for medical waste, for example.

Recycling collections will remain weekly, alternating between green weeks (plastic bottles, tins and cans) and red weeks (paper and cardboard), and food waste is collected weekly. Those properties remaining on black sack collections will still have a weekly collection.

Cllr Michael Talbot, TDC Cabinet Member for Environment, urged residents to keep recycling and not worry about using an official box. “We have been monitoring stocks and ordered more recycling boxes, and I would like to apologise to anybody inconveniences by this,” he said. “This surge in demand was anticipated, but the level has outstripped supply. However, we believe this is a very positive sign of just how much recycling is being taken up by residents who either weren’t doing it at all before, or who are upping their game, which can only be a good thing for the environment.

He added: “Our message is to keep on recycling, and to remind people that they don’t need to use an official TDC marked container to do so. As long as households use a suitable plastic container – and the contents are the correct materials for that particular collection – our contractors will still collect it. In addition, we appreciate there have been a considerable number of residents contacting us by phone, email and social media with questions about the service and their individual property. I would reassure people we are working our way through all of these enquiries, and ask you to bear with us.”

The wheelie bin roll-out is scheduled to finish in mid-August. For details on the new service, including where to collect a food caddy from, visit

(News from Tendring District Council)

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