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Plan ahead for your spring cleaning

6 April 2017

Spring cleaners and DIYers are being urged to plan ahead and make sure they don’t waste their weekends and bank holidays needlessly queuing at the local tip.

This time of year always sees an increase in traffic at council recycling centres as homes throughout Essex have a clear out. With a little preparation, residents can save themselves time, help reduce congestion at recycling centres or even give their unwanted items a new lease of life in a new home.

Rather than just loading up the car, Recycle for Essex recommends looking to services likeFreegle and Freecycle where you can pass on your unwanted reusable items. From paving slabs, to general household items, even the kitchen sink will be collected, reducing waste and saving a trip to the tip.

Another way to beat the queues is to donate to a reuse organisation or charity shop. Your unwanted furniture, books and other household items will be going on to do some good and supporting local charities.

Residents are also reminded that new rules were introduced last October at local recycling centres. Since last autumn, only larger recycling centres will accept small quantities of heavy DIY and construction waste, such as kitchen units, bathroom suites, soil and hardcore. Residents should use skip services for larger projects.

Alternatively, reduce trips to the tip by saving items up to get rid of in one go rather than making multiple visits. Please visit to check the new rules at your nearest recycling centre before visiting, or to find the most appropriate site for your particular load. The smaller sites are generally less busy, so sometimes a slightly longer drive could actually lead to a quicker trip. 

Jason Searles, Head of Waste Commissioning said: “At this time of year we often see an increase in traffic at our wastes sites as people have a clear-out and use bank holiday weekends to do a spot of DIY around the home.

“By planning ahead you can make sure that you keep the time spent at our waste sites at an absolute minimum and enjoy more of your time off.

“Services like Freegle and Freecycle are an excellent way to recycle your things and a hassle-free way to not only get rid of them, but also send them off to a new home.”

More information on how to pass on your items can be found out at, and