Visit libraries to pick up recycling sacks

Published: Tuesday, September 21, 2021

In a further move to make it easier for residents to recycle, the council is making its clear recycling sacks available for collection at some of the borough’s local libraries.

Share this

From tomorrow (Wednesday) residents will be able to visit five local libraries to pick up sacks.

The libraries are Balham, Battersea, Putney, Tooting and Southfields. Sacks can also be collected from the council’s Customer Service Centre at the town hall in Wandsworth High Street.

For library opening times and locations please visit the council’s website. The Customer Services Centre at the town hall is open Monday to Friday 10am to 4pm. There is no need to make an appointment.

Residents are also being reminded that bulky cardboard does not need to be placed inside sacks in order for it to be collected for recycling. As long as the cardboard is flattened, dry and neatly stacked alongside people’s other recycling and general waste – it will be collected.

Residents are requested to avoid leaving cardboard out for extended periods in the rain, as it will not be possible to collect if it is too wet.

The council is also telling residents that other types of recycling can be left in any clear and transparent sack. They do not necessarily need to be ones issued by the council.

These changes are being made as the result of a number of factors.

Firstly, the amount of waste and recycling left out by households since the pandemic began has increased significantly – meaning residents are using and needing more recycling sacks than ever.

And secondly, with covid infections resulting in staff shortages for our contractor, combined with a nationwide shortage of lorry drivers and agency replacements, the normal distribution schedule of clear sacks has been affected.

Environment spokesman Cllr Steffi Sutters said: “We know that many of our residents are really dedicated to recycling so it’s our job to give them tools to support that.

“Making sacks available for collection at libraries, and also from the town hall, is a simple and straightforward measure that will help achieve this. Most of these libraries are located in main town centres so should be easy and convenient for residents to get to.

“All we would ask is that residents who collect sacks take only what they need. It would be a real drawback if people take away huge numbers of sacks and leave none for their neighbours.

“We will of course ensure that stocks are regularly replenished, but we would appeal to people to take only what they realistically need.”

Almost 90,000 homes are covered by the clear sack doorstep scheme, while approximately 65,000 high rise properties with communal waste facilities are able to use the communal recycling banks located at their housing blocks.

Clear sacks need to be used so that collection staff can see if the contents have been contaminated or not. It is not uncommon to find food waste, dirty nappies and other unrecyclable items inside clear sacks.

For more information please visit