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Bin and box collections

Coronavirus update: changes to waste services

Last updated: Friday 15 May 2020

This page gives information on which waste services have been suspended, which are running as usual and what to do with coronavirus waste. We are reviewing our service delivery on a daily basis. Please check this page or our social media regularly and share updates with neighbours and friends who may not be online.

Recycling centres and civic amenity sites

Recycling centres in Belfast will reopen to the public from Monday 18 May. Temporary arrangements will be in place in order to protect your and our staff's health and safety, and to facilitate social distancing in line with the current public health advice.

  • Recycling centres will be open six days per week, from 9am-5pm Monday to Friday, and from 10am-5pm on Saturday. They will be closed on Sunday. 
  • You will be asked to provide proof of address as the sites will only be open for people living in the Belfast City Council area. 
  • There may be significant queues and delays, so we are asking you to consider if your visit is absolutely essential. We are appealing for cooperation with the temporary arrangements and thank you for your patience at this time.
  • Recycling centres will only be able to accept:
    • bagged general waste/non-recyclable waste/black bag waste
    • garden waste (grass, hedge trimmings – no garden furniture or machinery)
    • glass bottles and jars
    • cardboard 
  • Vans or trailers will not be permitted access and the number of vehicles on site at any one time will be restricted. 
  • Temporary traffic management arrangements will be in place at each of our recycling centres to allow vehicles to enter and exit our sites safely.
  • You will be responsible for unloading your own waste to maintain social distancing from staff.
  • If you are self-isolating or have symptoms of Covid19 should not visit a recycling centre. 
  • Civic amenity sites at Agnes Street, Cregagh Road and Springfield Road remain closed.

Waste and recycling collection services

  • Normal collections have resumed for black, brown and blue bins. Please present your bins for collection on your usual collection day. Find your bin collection day online.
  • Purple glass recycling box collections resumed on Monday 11 May. Please present your purple glass recycling box for collection on your usual collection day. You should present your recycling box with the lid on. We can’t accept broken glass, or extra glass which is not in the recycling box. If possible, please store any extra glass until your next collection.
  • Wheelie box collections for residents in the Castle area of north Belfast have resumed. There are some changes to this service, and you will need to sort your waste differently. Find out more.
  • Bryson recycling box collections are continuing as usual and they are asking you to sort your recycling differently. Find out more. (opens in new window).
  • Normal deliveries of green food waste bags have resumed.
To help our crews as much as possible, you should:
  • not leave side waste or extra rubbish bags next to your bin, as we can’t collect them
  • sort your recycling properly
  • make sure you wash your hands, before and after handling your bins or recycling boxes
  • wipe the handle of your bin and boxes down after you leave it at your usual collection point
  • follow social distancing guidance
  • make sure disposable gloves are placed into your black bin once you’ve finished using them
  • visit nidirect for more advice on bin hygiene.
You must not put items such as used tissues or disposable cleaning cloths into your recycling bins or boxes. This is very important.

Coronavirus waste

If you have suspected, or confirmed coronavirus, follow these instructions before putting items such as used tissues and disposable cleaning cloths in your black waste bin:

  • double-bag them, tying the bags securely
  • keep them separate from other waste for 72 hours before putting them into your black waste bin for collection

Fly-tipping

We are aware of reports of fly-tipping across the city and our teams are trying to respond to requests for service as resources allow.

If possible, we would ask people to report fly-tipping via our online form and we will clear rubbish as soon as operationally possible.

Visit nidirect website for more information on fly-tipping.

Bulky waste collections suspended

We’re not taking new bookings for bulky waste collections.

More information

Thank you for your continued support and patience in these challenging circumstances.

Find my bin collection day

Find my box collection day

Bryson Recycling collect recycling boxes and green food waste bins in the inner city. 

If you have already reported a missed bin collection to us by phone or using our online form please follow the instructions you received.

Bin and recycling box collections information

Please recycle as much as possible to avoid over-filling your general waste bin.

We have two types of collection in Belfast:

For general waste bin, a recycling bin and compost bin:

  • All bins are collected fortnightly - recycling bin one week, general waste and compost bin the next week.
  • In most cases, your collection day is the same each week.
  • If you have a purple glass recycling box it may be collected on a different day to your wheeled recycling bin.

For general waste bin, red and black recycling boxes and a green food waste bin:

  • Your general waste bin is collected fortnightly.
  • Your recycling boxes and food waste are collected weekly (on the same day).
  • Your collection day will be the same day of the week as your general waste collection. 

Using your bin

Please remember:

  • Always leave your bin out by 7am, and keep it out until 8pm if it hasn't been collected.
  • Leave it at your bin collection point and return it to your property after collection.
  • Don't overfill your bin - make sure the lid closes properly.
  • Don't leave waste next to your bin as we can't collect it and you risk an £80 fine.
  • If using a wheelie bin liner, make sure you remove it from the rim of your bin before collection.
  • Don't put electrical or bulky items in your bin. Book a bulky waste collection for these.
  • Keep your bin clean, disinfected and in good repair.
  • Don't put waste in or take waste out of a bin you don't own or control.
  • We'll only collect one general waste bin per property, unless there are exceptional circumstances, where:
    • there are six or more people living in the property, or
    • someone with a medical condition in the property requires another bin for their waste. 

Recycling

Please try to separate your waste as best you can. It’s very important that you put the correct items in our recycling bins or it can contaminate a whole bin lorry of waste. This waste could end up in landfill. 

Our staff cannot empty a contaminated bin and will put a contamination label on it.

Below are five handy tips to help avoid contaminating recycling bins.

  1. What goes in my bins? - Belfast City Council
  2. Look out for recycling labels on packaging to help identify whether it is recyclable or not. 
  3. Try to recycle items you are sure we collect - such as plastic bottles, papers, cardboard, plastic tubs and trays, tins and cans. And try to recycle from every room in the house.
  4. If in doubt, leave it out – don’t put an item in your recycling bin if you are not certain we can recycle it. (We cannot collect recycling bins with items such as dirty or wet paper or card, glass or nappies).
  5. Empty and rinse all containers before you put them in your wheeled bin.

Putting the wrong materials into your recycling bins or boxes?

If you put the wrong materials in your recycling bins or boxes, we can't collect them. It could contaminate our whole collection and all waste in the lorry may have go to landfill. We'll put a non-collection tag on it telling you why it wasn't collected. Please remove the offending item, dispose of it correctly and put your bin or box out on the next collection date.

See what goes in my bins for more information.

Braille on bins

We can provide blind and partially sighted residents with tactile plaques for their bins. These plaques are attached to bins and boxes so residents can tell the difference.

If you would like these plaques for your bins, please call us on 0800 032 8100 or email: wastemanagement@belfastcity.gov.uk


Contact us
Refuse collection
028 9027 0230
Cleansing Services
Ground Floor
Cecil Ward Building
4-10 Linenhall Street
Belfast
BT2 8BP