Recycling your Christmas tree has never been easier

Ealing Council has announced it is extending its Christmas tree recycling service by picking up real trees from homes across the borough.

This year, for the first time, residents can leave their Christmas tree – with all decorations removed – out for collection with their normal weekly garden waste recycling collection. If the tree is larger than 6ft in height or its trunk is 20cm in diameter, it needs to be cut in two for collection. They can be left out during January on the usual refuse and recycling collection day (at the front of the property, but not on the pavement where they can cause obstruction). The Christmas trees collected will be turned into compost along with other garden waste collected.

Residents, who live in flats and who don’t have a garden waste recycling service, can also take real Christmas trees of all shapes and sizes to a number of venues across the borough during the month of January. Trees collected from parks will be turned into nutritious compost which will then be mixed with soil and used to make the borough’s parks and open spaces bloom. The three Re-use and Recycling centres will be open as usual (except on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day) and accept all garden waste, including Christmas trees, for recycling.

It is not just Christmas trees that households can recycle. The amount of waste produced at Christmas increases considerably. One billion Christmas cards are sent every year in the UK, that is 17 cards for every man, woman and child. Around 13,350 tonnes of glass is thrown out in the UK at Christmas time. Recycling this would save the CO2 equivalent of taking 1300 cars off the road for a year.* The council’s recycling services will be operating over Christmas and new year, allowing residents to recycle as much as possible. For most people collection dates will be a day later than normal in the first week of January, visit the  website to find out your revised collection day.

By recycling more waste, residents could also win cash for their area through Recycling Rewards. This is a competition, run by the council, which offers a £20,000 cash incentive to the communities that show the greatest improvements as well as the best overall recycling participation rates. The winning wards will be able to spend the money on any local project of their choosing for their area.

Councillor Bassam Mahfouz, cabinet member for Transport and Environment, said: “We want to make recycling as easy as possible so I’m delighted that for the first time ever we are collecting Christmas trees from residents’ doorsteps. We want to ensure every natural Christmas tree is recycled by making it as easy as possible for everyone.

“I also want to encourage people to think carefully about how they dispose of their waste.  Everyone can do their bit to reduce the amount of rubbish produced by reusing whatever they can instead of throwing things away and recycling packaging and food waste. In doing so you are not only doing your bit for the environment and also improving your chances of winning some cash for your area through Recycling Rewards.”

Read more about  recycling and  Recycling Rewards on the council’s website.
You can take your old Christmas trees (with all decorations removed) to the following locations:

Acton Green Common
Acton Park
Berkeley Fields (Berkeley Avenue entrance)
Churchfields, Hanwell (car park)
Cleveland Park
Ealing Central Sports Ground (Horsenden Lane South entrance)
Ealing Common (Junction of Grange Rd & The Common entrance)
Elthorne Park (Boston Road entrance)
Islip Manor Park (Eastcote Lane car park)
North Acton playing fields
Perivale Park (Cowgate Road entrance)
Pitshanger Park
Ravenor Park (Oldfield Lane South & Ruislip Road entrance)
Rectory Park (Parkfield Drive entrance)
Southall Park (Green Drive entrance)
Southfields Park
Spikes Bridge Park (West Avenue entrance)
Springfield Gardens (Rosemont Road entrance)
Walpole Park (Lammas Park Gardens entrance)

*Based on 2007 research by WRAP