Recycling collections suspended due to coronavirus

PUBLISHED: 24 March 2020

Date Published: 24 March 2020

Due to the impact of coronavirus (COVID-19), Colchester Borough Council has made the difficult decision to suspend all its recycling collections, other than food waste, from 25 March 2020 until further notice.

The outbreak of coronavirus has led to reduced resource within the service as well as an increase in the amount of rubbish and recycling households are putting out for collection as they spend more time at home.

The council has made this decision so its resources can focus the critical elements of the service – food waste, black bags and black wheelie bin collections – in order to maintain public health and safety. The decision has also been made with the safety and welfare of our staff in mind, taking into account government guidance issued on social distancing.

Households should also follow the guidelines on the Love Essex website about how to safely dispose of their rubbish if someone is self-isolating or has coronavirus. They are also been asked to reduce and re-use their waste items where possible e.g. recipes using food leftovers, home composting, craft projects, carrying out repairs and repurposing items.

The council’s Rubbish Collections Exemption Policy which limits households to being able to put out one black wheelie bin or three 60-litre black bags on a Blue Week still applies but will be reviewed as the situation evolves. On a Green Week, only food waste will be collected for the time being.

Councillor Martin Goss, Portfolio Holder for Waste, Environment and Transportation, said: “This is an incredibly difficult time for everyone and as a council we have to prioritise and resource our critical services, which include household rubbish and food waste collections.

“We know from our growing recycling rates, that our borough does a fantastic job of recycling and we would encourage residents to reduce and reuse their items as much as possible at the moment and where practical and possible to do so, hold on to their recycling until this service resumes.

“Our crews are doing a fantastic job at helping us to maintain this critical service for our residents and the more residents can do to help our communities and our crews, the more we can do to help our local communities during this national emergency.”

Households will be unable to report missed collections for these items, whilst this service is suspended and will only be able to report missed food waste or black bag/bin collections, if necessary.

Bulky and special waste collections have also been suspended for the foreseeable future.

The council’s fly-tipping service and assisted collections are operating as normal and litter bins and dog waste bins will also continue to be emptied.

Garden waste collections were suspended for the foreseeable future yesterday.

Essex County Council has also closed its recycling centres until further notice.

For further information and updates about Colchester Borough Council services during this outbreak, residents are encouraged to visit  

Stay at Home, Protect the NHS, Save Lives

Page last reviewed: 24 March 2020


Subscribe to receive updates on Council news, events and offers, green living, leisure and sport, museums, committees, jobs and more.