Rossendale Borough Council’s innovative recycle campaign up for national award

Published September 8, 2023 at 11:38

a bin waggon with a sign on the side saying check before you chuck and two bin men stood infront of the waggon

Rossendale Borough Council has been shortlisted for the ‘Local Authority Success’ award in the 2023 National Recycling Awards (NRA) for its ‘Check before you chuck’ pilot campaign.

The innovative campaign, which ran for six months, was devised when figures revealed Rossendale had one of the lowest recycling rates in Lancashire.

The scheme saw a 15 per cent increase in the recycling of glass, plastic and tin, paper and cardboard recycling up by 11 per cent and a reduction in general waste of six per cent.

It was launched after research showed many Rossendale residents were putting all of their rubbish in their general waste bin as they were unsure of what could be recycled and which bins to use.

The NRA celebrates the planet-saving efforts of recycling, reuse, and waste industries across the country, and Rossendale Borough Council are one of the nominees.

Previous winners include Birmingham City Council and East Riding of Yorkshire Council for their efforts in promoting better recycling in their local area.

Rossendale Borough Council trialled ‘Check before you chuck’ in four pilot areas before they roll it out across the borough.

The pilot areas were provided with leaflets with a QR code for clear and concise information on how to recycle in Rossendale.

There was also a supporting social media campaign, with local ‘Bin-thusiast’, nine-year-old Dexter from Stacksteads, and the council’s own ‘Bin-fluencer’ education officer, Pat Mannion, who provided videos about how to recycle, which featured on the council’s TikTok channel.

Residents took to the campaign brilliantly, with the increases in all recyclable materials across the pilot areas.

Leader of Rossendale Borough Council, Alyson Barnes, said: “The results of this campaign were more than we could have hoped for. It’s tough to bring about significant behaviour change but this campaign showed that with effective communication, information and support, it can be done.

“It’s been fantastic to see the campaign receive the recognition it deserves and be shortlisted in the National Recycling Awards.

“The response to the campaign was incredibly positive, and I’d like to thank all the residents that helped make it a success – and of course, it’s great to see more recycling in our local area.”

In addition to the National Recycling Awards, the campaign also won ‘Best Public Sector Campaign’ in the PRCA Dare Awards earlier this year.

The campaign’s success highlighted a desire for more light-hearted, easy-to-digest information on recycling, and so will be rolled out across Rossendale over the next 12 months.

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