Call to end York recycling ‘farce’ – and replace collection boxes with single wheelie bin

York’s recycling system is bad for residents, fills streets with rubbish, and is highly inefficient.

So says one councillor, who is calling for a complete change in the way waste is dealt with.


Cllr Mark Warters (Independent, Osbaldwick) wants to replace the current system of boxes with a single wheelie bin for recycling – which is “an ineffective farce”.

As things stand residents sort recyclables into three boxes – glass; plastic and cans; and paper – before putting them out for twice-monthly collections.

Rubbish in the streets

York recycling boxes. Photograph: YorkMix
In a letter to City of York Council executive member for the environment, he writes:

  • The notable example I have always used has been neighbouring East Riding of Yorkshire Council.

    There mixed recycling – plastics, paper, cardboard and glass are all put in the same receptacle by residents – a blue wheelie bin.

He said this was quicker and easier for residents – “quicker as rubbish does not have to be sorted, and easier because a number of boxes don’t have to be stored and carted about every fortnight – a big consideration for elderly residents but quicker and easier for the council collection teams”.


Instead Cllr Warters says residents have to sort recyclables “into a number of silly little boxes that have to be lifted out on bin day, boxes that frequently see lids and rubbish blowing through the streets in a windy bin day and when emptied are left strewn about the streets, with the empty boxes frequently blowing all over including being a hazard on the public highway”.

He points out that the East Riding council is top in the recycling league table for 2016-17 published by Let’s Recycle.

City of York Council, by contrast, comes in at 191st, with a recycling rate of 42.5%. See the full table below.

YorkMix has reached out to Cllr Andrew Waller for a comment, and will update this story if we receive one.

RankAuthority% of household waste sent for reuse, recycling or composting
1East Riding of Yorkshire Council65.40%
2Rochford District Council63.90%
3South Oxfordshire District Council63.80%
4West Oxfordshire District Council63.40%
5Vale of White Horse District Council62.50%
6Surrey Heath Borough Council62.30%
7Three Rivers District Council61.90%
8South Northamptonshire District Council61.40%
9Trafford MBC61.30%
10Stratford-on-Avon District Council61.30%
11Derbyshire Dales District Council59.80%
12Guildford Borough Council59.70%
13Cotswold District Council59.60%
14Woking Borough Council59.40%
15Dorset Waste Partnership59.40%
16Rutland County Council59.30%
17Stockport MBC59.00%
18North Hertfordshire District Council58.90%
19Mole Valley District Council58.20%
20Cheshire West and Chester58.00%
21Maldon District Council58.00%
22Epping Forest Borough Council57.70%
23Oxfordshire County Council57.70%
24Tandridge District Council57.70%
25Surrey County Council57.70%
26St Albans City and District Council57.50%
27Staffordshire Moorlands District Council57.40%
28Suffolk Coastal District Council57.40%
29Cherwell District Council56.50%
30North Somerset Council56.30%
31Teignbridge District Council55.70%
32Devon County Council55.70%
33Buckinghamshire County Council55.40%
34Cheshire East55.20%
35Ashford Borough Council55.00%
36Reigate and Banstead Borough Council55.00%
37Elmbridge Borough Council55.00%
38Shropshire54.80%
39Warwick District Council54.70%
40South Hams District Council54.70%
41Warwickshire County Council54.40%
42Warrington Borough Council54.30%
43Bath and North East Somerset Council54.10%
44Cambridgeshire County Council53.80%
45West Devon Borough Council53.80%
46Harborough District Council53.60%
47Mid Devon District Council53.40%
48Tewkesbury Borough Council53.30%
49Welwyn Hatfield Council53.00%
50Essex County Council52.90%
51Tameside MBC52.80%
52Bury MBC52.70%
53Bexley LB52.70%
54Somerset County Council52.70%
55East Cambridgeshire District Council52.40%
56Lichfield District Council52.30%
57Hertfordshire County Council52.20%
58Forest of Dean District Council52.20%
59Gloucestershire County Council52.00%
60Stafford Borough Council51.90%
61South Staffordshire Council51.90%
62Wealden District Council51.90%
63Hambleton District Council51.80%
64Daventry District Council51.80%
65West Berkshire District Council51.80%
66Uttlesford District Council51.50%
67Wycombe District Council b51.30%
68South Bucks District Council51.30%
69Waverley Borough Council51.30%
70East Hertfordshire District Council51.20%
71Dacorum Borough Council51.10%
72Broadland District Council50.90%
73Huntingdonshire District Council50.80%
74Ealing LB50.70%
75Milton Keynes Council50.60%
76Fylde Borough Council50.50%
77West Somerset District Council50.50%
78Rushcliffe Borough Council50.40%
79Aylesbury Vale District Council50.30%
80Northamptonshire County Council50.20%
81Rugby Borough Council50.10%
82Suffolk County Council50.10%
83Maidstone Borough Council49.90%
84Kettering Borough Council49.80%
85Calderdale MBC49.70%
86Leicestershire County Council49.70%
87Braintree District Council49.70%
88Kingston-upon-Hull City Council49.50%
89Basildon District Council49.50%
90Poole Borough Council49.50%
91Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council49.40%
92East Staffordshire Borough Council49.30%
93Staffordshire County Council49.20%
94South Gloucestershire Council49.20%
95Tunbridge Wells Borough Council49.10%
96Oxford City Council49.00%
97West Lindsey District Council48.90%
98Castle Point Borough Council48.90%
99Bournemouth Borough Council48.80%
100Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council48.60%
101Barnsley MBC48.50%
102Charnwood Borough Council48.40%
103Derbyshire County Council48.30%
104Oadby and Wigston Borough Council48.30%
105Rother District Council48.30%
106Taunton Deane Borough Council48.30%
107South Derbyshire District Council48.20%
108High Peak Borough Council48.10%
109Blaby District Council47.90%
110North Lincolnshire Council47.80%
111Melton Borough Council47.70%
112Wakefield City MDC47.50%
113South Ribble Borough Council47.40%
114Windsor and Maidenhead Borough Council47.40%
115Cheltenham Borough Council47.30%
116Rochdale MBC47.20%
117Chorley Borough Council47.20%
118West Lancashire Borough Council47.10%
119Doncaster MBC47.00%
120Chelmsford Borough Council47.00%
121Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames47.00%
122Bromley LB46.90%
123Epsom and Ewell Borough Council46.80%
124Sedgemoor District Council46.80%
125Greater Manchester WDA (MBC)46.70%
126North Yorkshire County Council46.70%
127North West Leicestershire District Council46.70%
128Lincolnshire County Council46.70%
129Norfolk County Council46.70%
130Isle of Wight Council46.50%
131Ryedale District Council46.40%
132North East Derbyshire District Council46.30%
133Fenland District Council46.30%
134Kent County Council46.30%
135East Northamptonshire Council46.20%
136North Warwickshire Borough Council46.20%
137Central Bedfordshire46.20%
138South Somerset District Council46.20%
139North Kesteven District Council46.10%
140Cambridge City and South Cambs Councils c46.10%
141East Devon District Council46.10%
142Chesterfield Borough Council46.00%
143Southend-on-Sea Borough Council46.00%
144Spelthorne Borough Council46.00%
145Telford and Wrekin Council45.80%
146Tamworth Borough Council45.80%
147Colchester Borough Council45.80%
148Kings Lynn and West Norfolk Borough Council45.70%
149Lancashire County Council45.60%
150Stroud District Council45.50%
151East Lindsey District Council45.40%
152Cannock Chase Council45.40%
153Brentwood Borough Council45.20%
154Salford City Council MBC44.90%
155Wyre Borough Council44.90%
156South Norfolk Council44.90%
157Bromsgrove District Council44.70%
158Dover District Council44.70%
159Cumbria County Council44.50%
160Horsham District Council44.50%
161North Devon District Council44.50%
162Bolton MBC44.40%
163Canterbury City Council44.40%
164West Sussex County Council44.30%
165Nottinghamshire County Council44.20%
166Wychavon District Council44.20%
167Runnymede Borough Council44.10%
168Harlow District Council43.90%
169Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council43.80%
170Mid Suffolk District Council43.80%
171Wigan MBC43.70%
172Halton Borough Council43.60%
173East Sussex County Council43.60%
174Hertsmere Borough Council43.40%
175Hillingdon LB43.40%
176Bristol City Council43.40%
177Mendip District Council43.40%
178St Edmundsbury Borough Council43.30%
179South Kesteven District Council43.20%
180Wiltshire43.10%
181Eden District Council42.90%
182Watford Borough Council42.90%
183Medway Borough Council42.80%
184Erewash Borough Council42.70%
185Wellingborough Borough Council42.70%
186Worcestershire County Council42.70%
187Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council42.60%
188Selby District Council42.60%
189Craven District Council42.60%
190Corby Borough Council42.60%
191York City Council42.50%
192Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council42.50%
193Shepway District Council42.50%
194South Lakeland District Council42.40%
195Solihull MBC42.40%
196Waveney District Council42.40%
197Richmond upon Thames LB42.40%
198Newcastle-upon-Tyne City Council MBC42.30%
199Torridge District Council42.20%
200Rotherham MBC42.10%
201Bolsover District Council42.10%
202Wolverhampton MBC42.00%
203Peterborough City Council41.90%
204North Norfolk District Council41.90%
205Hampshire County Council41.60%
206Swale Borough Council41.60%
207Northampton Borough Council41.50%
208Torbay Council41.50%
209Richmondshire District Council41.30%
210Walsall MBC41.30%
211Herefordshire Council41.20%
212Merseyside WDA (MBC)41.10%
213Broxbourne Borough Council41.10%
214Chichester District Council41.10%
215Carlisle City Council41.00%
216Ashfield District Council41.00%
217Sandwell MBC41.00%
218Leicester City Council40.70%
219Bedford40.70%
220Eastleigh Borough Council40.70%
221Breckland Council40.30%
222Bracknell Forest Borough Council40.10%
223Ipswich Borough Council40.00%
224Scarborough Borough Council39.90%
225Broxtowe Borough Council39.90%
226Stevenage Borough Council39.80%
227Oldham MBC39.70%
228Harrow LB39.70%
229Gloucester City Council39.70%
230Mid Sussex District Council39.60%
231County Durham39.50%
232West London Waste Authority39.10%
233Lancaster City Council38.90%
234St Helens MBC38.90%
235Harrogate Borough Council38.90%
236Wokingham Council38.90%
237Arun District Council38.90%
238Croydon LB38.60%
239Swindon Borough Council38.40%
240Norwich City Council38.30%
241Hart District Council38.30%
242Sevenoaks District Council38.30%
243Allerdale Borough Council37.90%
244Leeds City Council MBC37.90%
245Sefton MBC37.80%
246Northumberland37.70%
247Malvern Hills District Council37.70%
248Boston Borough Council37.60%
249Forest Heath District Council37.50%
250Darlington Borough Council37.40%
251Barnet LB37.40%
252Dudley MBC37.30%
253Havering LB37.30%
254Enfield LB37.20%
255Thurrock Council37.10%
256Eastbourne Borough Council37.10%
257Ribble Valley Borough Council37.00%
258Bradford City MDC (MBC)37.00%
259Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council36.70%
260Gedling Borough Council36.70%
261Worcester City Council36.70%
262Sutton LB36.50%
263Brent LB36.40%
264Lincoln City Council36.20%
265Manchester City Council MBC36.00%
266Wirral MBC35.90%
267Haringey LB35.70%
268Merton LB35.70%
269Burnley Borough Council35.50%
270Derby City Council35.30%
271Worthing Borough Council35.30%
272North Tyneside Council35.20%
273Greenwich LB34.90%
274Stoke-on-Trent City Council34.80%
275South Tyneside MBC34.70%
276Mansfield District Council34.60%
277Cornwall34.60%
278Rossendale Borough Council34.50%
279Gravesham Borough Council34.50%
280Waltham Forest LB34.40%
281Gateshead MBC34.20%
282Winchester City Council34.20%
283Pendle Borough Council34.10%
284Southwark LB34.00%
285Luton Borough Council33.80%
286East Hampshire District Council33.80%
287Thanet District Council33.80%
288Middlesbrough Borough Council33.70%
289Blackpool Borough Council33.50%
290Great Yarmouth Borough Council33.30%
291Fareham Borough Council33.20%
292Hartlepool Borough Council33.10%
293Test Valley Borough Council33.00%
294Hyndburn Borough Council32.90%
295Knowsley MBC32.80%
296Wyre Forest District Council32.80%
297Adur District Council32.70%
298Copeland Borough Council32.50%
299Amber Valley Borough Council32.20%
300North London Waste Authority32.20%
301Reading Borough Council32.10%
302Plymouth City Council32.00%
303Newark and Sherwood District Council31.90%
304Islington LB31.60%
305Exeter City Council31.60%
306Preston City Council31.40%
307Redditch Borough Council31.00%
308New Forest District Council31.00%
309Hastings Borough Council30.30%
310Kirklees MBC30.10%
311Hounslow LB30.10%
312Coventry City Council29.90%
313Nottingham City Council29.80%
314Sheffield City Council29.60%
315Havant Borough Council29.50%
316Barrow-in-Furness Borough Council29.30%
317North East Lincolnshire Council28.90%
318Lambeth LB28.80%
319City of London28.50%
320South Holland District Council28.30%
321Southampton City Council28.20%
322Liverpool City Council28.10%
323Tower Hamlets LB27.60%
324Crawley Borough Council27.40%
325Hackney LB27.00%
326Brighton and Hove Council27.00%
327Tendring District Council26.80%
328Redbridge LB26.70%
329Camden LB26.60%
330Rushmoor Borough Council26.60%
331Sunderland City Council26.50%
332Slough Borough Council26.30%
333Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council26.30%
334Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council25.80%
335East London Waste Authority25.80%
336Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea25.70%
337Barking and Dagenham LB25.30%
338Dartford Borough Council25.20%
339Lewes District Council25.10%
340Portsmouth City Council24.70%
341Birmingham City Council24.40%
342Western Riverside Waste Authority23.70%
343Hammersmith and Fulham LB23.20%
344Gosport Borough Council22.00%
345Wandsworth LB21.90%
346Bassetlaw District Council21.10%
347Council of the Isles of Scilly19.50%
348Lewisham LB17.70%
349Westminster City Council17.40%
350Newham LB14.10%