Bin it to win it!

Money for nothing as council gives recycling incentive to residents

Householders across the borough could be in line for a cash bonus – just for being good at recycling.

Stafford Borough Council is launching a new scheme called ‘coming to a bin near you’ with home owners being offered £60 if they have no recycling in their green rubbish bins.

And the first area of the borough chosen to be part of the recycling doorstep challenge is the village of Great Haywood on Tuesday 9 September.

The local authority has been running a number of initiatives in a bid to hit a 60% recycling target in a move that council bosses say will help the environment – as well as keep council tax down. It currently recycles around 53% of all household waste.

Council staff will be knocking on the door of an address, picked at random, and if the resident can prove their refuse bin is recycling free then they will be given £60. But if the house is not recycling all it can, staff will choose other addresses in the street in a bid to give away the cash.

Councillor Frank Finlay, Cabinet Member for Environment, said

“We have had tremendous support in the past for our recycling initiatives and I hope this will prove a popular addition to help spur the community on.

“Where other councils may have looked to fine residents for not recycling properly – we want to reward those who are doing all they can.”

Each month an address will be picked at random and will be kept secret – although the council will publicise in advance the area they will be visiting on its website and twitter account or people can find out by contacting the Civic Centre.

Recently the council set up a bathroom suite in the middle of Stafford and Stone to make the public more aware of products that can be recycled from the bathroom. And local primary school pupil, Evie Lockley, aged 11, recorded a message which is heard by callers to the authority’s waste phone line encouraging people to recycle from their bathroom.

Previous initiatives which allow more to be recycled include taking waxed drink cartons and aerosols, and allowing residents to put batteries and small electrical items in a carrier bag by the side of the blue bin.

Councillor Finlay praised residents for their efforts to increase recycling over the previous few years but continued: “We are asking people to do more. A lot of the stuff residents throw in the green refuse waste bin can actually be recycled – this is a message we are keen to get across which will help towards hitting the 60% recycling target we have set ourselves.

He added:

“We all know that recycling is good for the environment but what many do not know is that it is also good financially. The council is given money for the amount we recycle and this cash is pumped back in to the service. And the more money coming back to the service, means less money needed to run it – so ultimately recycling is helping to keep council tax down.”

To find out what you can recycle and more information on the bin collection service go to