Toggle menu

Stockton-on-Tees Borough residents to benefit from improved waste and recycling services

16 February 2024
a waste operative collecting waste from a residential street in Stockton.

a waste operative collecting waste from a residential street in Stockton.

Household waste and recycling collections are to be improved across Stockton-on-Tees to better meet residents' needs, help the environment and save money in the long term.

Members of Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council's Cabinet have approved recommendations from an extensive scrutiny review carried out by the Place Select Committee into the Borough's current waste and recycling service.

The recommendations include:

  • collect recycling every week
  • introduce a new weekly food waste collection
  • collect the other, residual waste fortnightly
  • review green waste collections in line with updated government guidance

Across the Borough refuse from domestic bins is currently collected weekly and recycling fortnightly, with a fortnightly garden waste collection during the summer.

The Borough's current recycling rate is the lowest in the Tees Valley at 24.3 per cent in 2020/21, ranking Stockton-on-Tees 328 out of 338 authorities nationally. This compares to the Tees Valley average of 30.58 per cent and a national average of 42 per cent.

The new waste management strategy will focus on improving recycling rates and will set out how the Council can work together with residents and businesses to collectively reduce, reuse and recycle as much as possible.  

Councillor Clare Gamble, Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council's Cabinet Member for the Environment and Transport, said: "Due to changes in national legislation, increasing costs and our ongoing commitment to reduce our carbon emissions, we need to change the way we collect and dispose of the Borough's waste to ensure an efficient, effective and resilient service, that is fit for the future.

"We are really proud of the service our hard-working waste and recycling team provide and we know it is valued by residents. But we really need to improve our recycling rate and want to move with the times - changing the way we manage our domestic waste and recycling collection is a way to face this challenge.

"Introducing a weekly recycling collection, alongside a weekly food waste collection will hopefully encourage households to recycle more. The removal of food waste and recyclable material allows the residual household waste to be collected fortnightly.

"It will also help the Council move forward with our commitment to the environment, reduce costs and, most importantly, continue to provide an outstanding service to our residents.

"Before any changes are introduced, Council officers will work to explore what size and type of recycling and food waste containers will best meet the needs of our residents, taking account of the different types of households.  

"We recognise these changes will bring a new routine for many people which is why we'll be working with residents to fully communicate the changes well in advance to ensure as smooth a transition as possible. We'll also be looking to engage with residents about recycling equipment - bags, boxes and food caddies - to find out about people's needs and preferences."

As part of the new waste and recycling strategy the Council's green waste collection will also be reviewed in line with updated Government guidance.

The Council is aiming to start the new arrangements from April 2026 to align with new national legislation, which will bring in compulsory weekly food waste collections. This will also align with the start of the Authority's new waste disposal contract.

Residents can also learn more about the changes and the new waste management strategy by visiting the household waste and recycling improvements web page.

For Council news direct to your inbox sign up to our My Council newsletter.