From Monday 1 November, recycling will no longer be collected from the old black boxes. Wokingham Borough Council and its contractor Veolia will only be collecting recycling from the sealed green waterproof recycling bags after this date.
The new waterproof recycling bags have replaced the old open black boxes so that the recycling materials will stay dry, which means that more of the materials can be recycled. The new bags should be fully sealed to keep the contents dry.
Residents using the black boxes from Monday 4 October will have a sticker placed on their boxes notifying them of the change, to ensure no one has their collection missed following a four week grace period.
Cllr Parry Batth, executive member for environment and leisure, said: “We are grateful to residents for their exceptional efforts in keeping their recyclables dry, as this has helped us recycle more and have less going to be incinerated.”
“We made the switch to the green bags for practical reasons, but we know they have been well received by our residents as well. We have heard from many residents that they really like the green waterproof bags as they are easier to use and more convenient than the black boxes.”
Residents are now able to get up to four more green recycling bags if needed. Residents can visit any of the council’s hubs during opening hours. To find collection hub locations and hours, visit WBC’s recycling webpage.
For residents who cannot collect the bags or arrange someone to collect them on their behalf, they can be ordered for delivery but please note due to the national shortage of HGV drivers, this may take over 14 days.
What to do with the black boxes
Repurpose: The council has heard from many residents repurposing their black boxes in unique and practical ways such as: storage for items, growing plants or vegetables, shelter for wildlife or donating to family, friends, neighbours, or anyone who wants it.
Find someone else who wants to repurpose them: Another alternative is rehoming the black boxes to people that may like more. If you haven’t found a use for yours, join the Facebook group ‘Wokingham Borough black box rehoming hub’ and connect with schools, companies, nurseries, or anyone else that may need some. This way those who want to reuse them can have access to more.
Recycle them: If residents can’t find a way to reuse or repurpose their black boxes, the re3 recycling centres are now able to recycle rigid plastic. All the materials are recycled in European and UK markets in pipelines, cars, construction and furniture materials. You can book your click & tip slot via the re3 webpage.