Home > Advice, information, recycling > Bin it Right – Recycling and General Waste – Durham County Council

Bin it Right – Recycling and General Waste – Durham County Council

Do you bin it right? From this week we’ll be adding stickers to recycling bins to help everyone remember what goes in which bin so we can recycle even more and help protect our environment.

The amount of waste that gets recycled has increased by over 30% since the introduction of alternate weekly collections in 2012, but last year nearly 10% of it was contaminated by non-recyclable materials. Most commonly nappies, pet waste and food. Contaminated material not only reduces recycling rates but also costs about £100 a tonne in alternative disposal.

If you ever want to know what goes in which bin, you can check on our website at www.durham.gov.uk/whatgoeswhere or call us on 03000 261000.

Bin it Right

Bin it Right

What goes in my recycling bin?

The following items go into your recycling bin with the blue lid.

Wash and squash your items where possible to remove food and save space. This helps to prevent contamination and keep your bin clean. Place all clean, dry items loose in your recycling bin to allow for sorting later.

Material Yes please No thanks
plastics recycling logo
  • all plastic bottles
  • yoghurt and butter containers
  • hard plastic containers
  • Children’s toys
  • black plastic food trays
Mixed paper recycling logo
  • all paper
  • all cardboard
  • plain greetings cards
  • polystyrene
  • used kitchen paper
  • wipes
  • nappies
Food and drink cans recycling logo
  • all steel and aluminium food tins and drinks cans
  • clean tin foil
  • biscuit and sweet tins
  • cutlery or any other metal objects
Carton logo
  • all cartons eg fruit juice, drinks and soup
  • polystyrene
Aerosol logo
  • aerosol cans

What goes in my recycling box?

The following items go clean and loose into the recycling box:

Material Yes please No thanks
Mixed glass logo
  • glass bottles and jars of all colours
  • broken glass
  • Pyrex
  • light bulbs
  • mirrors
  • flat glass

Other recyclable items

What about other items which are tricky to summarise under general headings?

Find a full list of items in our reuse and recycling A-Z.

What goes in my rubbish bin?

Material Yes please No thanks
Household Waste
  • domestic household waste that cannot be recycled.
  • recycling
  • rubble or bricks
  • vehicle parts
  • items which may make the bin too heavy

What goes in my garden waste bin?

The following items go into the garden waste bin with the brown lid.


Material Yes please No thanks
Garden waste icon
  • grass cuttings
  • shrubs
  • leaves
  • weeds
  • flowers and plants
  • hedge clippings
  • prunings
  • small branches (no larger than 7cm)
  • plastic / black bags
  • bio-degradable or compostable bags
  • plant pots / plastic trays
  • kitchen / food waste
  • soil / bricks / rubble
  • nappies
  • paper / plastic / cardboard
  • textiles
  • pet waste
  • children’s toys
  • garden ornaments

Bin it Right Guide

Find out more about recycling at home in our PDF IconBin It Right: A Guide to Recycling At Home.pdf (3 pages, 660kb).

Why is it important to put things in the right bins?

It’s really important that you follow these guidelines as it helps to reduce contamination and helps reduce the amount of waste going to energy from waste.

Every tonne of contaminated recycling costs the council approximately £100 to transport and dispose of through waste treatment.

If you do put waste in the wrong bin, you might find a reminder sticker on your bin or a leaflet through your door. You may also receive a letter asking you to remove it and put in the right bin before your next collection day.

Related links

Bin it Right logo

Timeline Photos – Durham County Council.

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