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How to get rid of unwanted items properly

All households will have waste, large items, unwanted or broken items from time to time. Knowing how to get rid of them properly is extremely important as it will help stop fly-tipping, save money and be better for the environment.

What should I do if I have something to get rid of?

Firstly, ask if this can be re-used, either by yourself, a friend of family member, or someone else in your community. If it can, try to find someone else who can use it, give it away to a charity, advertise it on social media or on a community notice board, or use websites such as Freegle to see if anyone else can make use of it.

If it's a larger item, such as furniture, some local charities may come and collect it for you.

If no one else could use the item/items then there a number of ways to dispose of them properly.

We offer a bulky item refuse collection to householders within Allerdale for a small fee. To arrange a bulky item collection ring us on 0303 123 1702.

Items which can be collected include bedroom furniture, small electronic items, garden equiment, home furniture, home office furniture and white goods. More information on what can be collected can be on our bulky waste item page

Household Waste Recycling Centres are run by Cumbria County Council and in Allerdale there are sites in Workington, Maryport and Wigton. There are other sites in neighbouring boroughs - such as Eden, South Lakeland, Carlisle and Copeland. Details of opening times and what can be deposited at each site can be found on the Cumbria County Council's website. These sites are for residents to recycle and dispose of domestic waste only.

There are a number of small recycling points are situated around the borough. So if you have smaller items, such as a lot of glass, cans and plastics or paper and card you can dispose of them at these sites. Please put the items in the correct bin, and don't deposit all items loose and not in plastic bags.

More information on where they are can be found on our bring site and recycling centre webpage.  

Please do not leave other items like white goods at these points as this would be classed as flytipping.

These sites are for residents to recycle and dispose of domestic waste only.

Advice for using private waste collectors

There are several private waste carriers operating in the area. However, anyone transporting waste must have a valid waste carriers permit and they must also provide a waste transfer note which proves that the waste has been transported and disposed of legally.

So before using a private company to come and collect your unwanted items make sure they are licensed to do so and if they are, make sure they provide you with a waste transfer note. Permits are granted by the Environment Agency and you can search for local permit holders on the Environment Agency website.

We all have a legal responsibility, called duty of care, to ensure that our rubbish is passed on to an authorised person so that it can be disposed of safely. If you use an unlicensed contractor and the waste is traced back to you, then you will be subject to prosecution.

Using licensed waste carriers helps prevent items being fly-tipped and protects taxpayers' money as every dumped item costs the council to clean-up.

Advice for businesses

Under the Environmental Protection Act 1990, all businesses, including those operating from home, have a legal ‘duty of care’ to take all reasonable steps to ensure that their waste (including recyclable materials) is properly managed.

This includes ensuring that your waste is managed correctly through its complete journey to disposal or recovery. It is also illegal to place business waste in a domestic bin or take it to a household waste recycling centre for disposal.

The council offers a trade waste service for businesses in Allerdale . More information can be found here. Other commercial options for trade waste collections are also available.

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Cumberland Council

On 1 April 2023 local government in Cumbria changed, with Cumberland Council providing all your council services.  

Don't worry though, your bins will be emptied as normal, and you'll still be able to speak to the same team about any enquiries to do with things like council tax, benefits, planning or any other service.

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