As we respond to coronavirus (COVID-19), we have streamlined our resources to prioritise delivery of essential services, such as waste collections and burials and cremations.
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Recycling centres in Belfast reopened to the public on Monday 18 May. Temporary arrangements are 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 are open six days per week, from 9am-5pm Monday to Friday, and from 10am-5pm on Saturday. They are 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. Examples of proof of address we will accept include your driving licence, a utility bill (gas, electricity, broadband supplier), or a bank statement.
- 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
- 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 coronavirus (COVID-19) you should not visit a recycling centre.
- Civic amenity sites at Agnes Street, Cregagh Road and Springfield Road remain closed.
Waste and recycling collection services
Most of our waste and recycling collections are running as usual.
- Collections of black, brown, and blue bins, and purple glass recycling boxes are continuing as usual. Find your bin collection day online.
- Wheelie box collections for residents in the Castle area of north Belfast have resumed, but you need to sort your recycling differently. Find out more.
- Bryson recycling box collections are continuing as usual, but you need to sort your recycling differently. Find out more. (opens in new window).
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.
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
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 using our online form and we will clear rubbish as soon as operationally possible.
Visit nidirect website for more information on fly-tipping.
New bin and recycling box orders
You can order new bins and recycling boxes as usual.
A limited number of glass bottle banks remain open at locations across the city.
Bulky waste collections suspended
We’re not taking new bookings for bulky waste collections.
Asbestos collection service suspended
We're not taking new bookings for asbestos collection.
There is disruption to our commercial services at this time.
Advice on garden bonfires
We are advising residents not to burn household waste in their gardens. Burning waste materials in your garden can produce unpleasant smells, soot and dangerous fumes.
If burning is regular or repeated, it can cause a smoke nuisance which is an offence under the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act (NI) 2011. Garden bonfires can also be very dangerous and can easily spread. If smoke from the burning materials affects visibility on roads and endangers traffic, it is an offence under the Roads (NI) Order 1981.
Find out what goes into your recycling bins and boxes and composting.
Register a death or stillbirth
An electronic system is in place to register a death or a stillbirth.
Please telephone our registration office on 028 9027 0455 and we will guide you through the process by telephone.
Register a birth
We are unable to register births at this time. This is subject to review.
Weddings and civil partnerships
We are unable to carry out weddings or civil partnership ceremonies at Belfast City Hall, Belfast Castle, Malone House or at external venues. We are not taking any bookings for marriages or civil partnerships.
We can only accept new applications for religious and humanist marriage notices by post at this time.
Knockbreda cemetery is open every day. Opening times in Roselawn Cemetery, City Cemetery and Dundonald Cemetery are limited to Tuesday and Thursday evenings and Sunday. Find out about arrangements
Burials and cremations
Burials are taking place. But there are restrictions on burial arrangements at our cemeteries.
We have closed the chapel and facilities at Roselawn Crematorium to mourners.
Cremations will be carried out but no family or friends can attend.
While Environmental Health Services have been suspended, you can use the following email addresses for any urgent queries. We will monitor these during office hours and deal with queries on a priority basis. We are unable to carry out visits to premises, unless it is an emergency, and will always consider the safety of staff and members of the public.
For our dog warden service, email firstname.lastname@example.org or for animal welfare, email email@example.com
For port health, email firstname.lastname@example.org (or you can phone 028 9035 1199)
For Houses in Multiple Occupation, email email@example.com
For other urgent queries including:
- food safety
- health and safety
- pollution control
- off street parking
- public health
email firstname.lastname@example.org. For emergencies outside normal working hours, phone 07850 499622.
We have temporarily suspended our pest control service and no appointments will be taken at this time. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.
We have suspended the abandoned vehicles service.
Many of our venues and facilities are closed.
Our public toilets are closed.
We have closed our playgrounds that can be locked. For those playgrounds that remain open, you must follow social distancing guidance.
We are waiving off-street parking charges at our car parks in line with Department for Infrastructure.
Just Eat Belfast Bikes
Belfast Bikes rent-a-bike service is suspended across Belfast. All bikes have been removed from the stations. Memberships will be frozen throughout this period.
Belfast Castle and Malone House
Belfast Castle and Malone House are closed to the public. Functions booked at either venue between now and the end of April, will be postponed or cancelled.
We will keep the situation under review.
You can email Belfast Castle at email@example.com or Malone House at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Our parks remain open to allow people to take daily exercise in their local park. But it is very important that everyone observes social distancing guidance when using our parks. A safe distance means staying at least two metres from everyone else in the park.
All car parks are currently closed at our parks and playing fields. From Wednesday 27 May, all car parks at our parks will be open to the public.
Our events are cancelled. Visit our events page for the latest updates.
Building Control, inspections, licences and permits
The Cecil Ward Building is closed for Building Control, licensing and permits but we are working remotely with a limited service.
Our office number 028 9027 0650 is unavailable but we can:
- accept building regulations applications by post.
- continue to answer your queries, although we’re limited in processing existing applications of all types across the service. You can contact us on
- respond to reports of dangerous structures where the safety of the public is a concern. Call us on 028 9027 0603 during office hours or 07850 499 622 outside office hours.
- deal with emergency queries about Affordable Warmth - call us on 028 9027 0651 during office hours.
- accept property certificates by post, or by email.
You can also:
We remain open and have new working practices in place.
Please send all correspondence by email to the email@example.com, which will make sure it is processed as quickly as possible.
Find the latest information and advice for business and employees.
If you need advice for your business or you are an employee or a member of public concerned about unsafe work practices in a shop, an office or a warehouse, you can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Concerns about unsafe work practices in other types of workplaces such as manufacturing and construction sites should be reported to the Health and Safety Executive for NI.
Guidance for employers and businesses on managing Legionella can also be found on the Health and Safety Executive for NI website.
Coronavirus business closures
During coronavirus (COVID-19), by law certain types of services, businesses and shops must close their premises to the public. We’re responsible for enforcing closures and restrictions shops and businesses which do not need a licence to operate. The police enforce closures of licensed premises.
To find lists of businesses which are subject to restrictions, go to:
Complaining about a shop or business
If you’re concerned a business is open when it shouldn’t be or is providing food and drink to be consumed on the premises, you can report this to us by email: email@example.com
Complaining about social distancing
Depending on the type of business, if you're concerned about social distancing in business premises, you should contact us by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or the Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) by email: email@example.com or telephone: 0800 0320 121
Complaining about a licensed premises
Licensed premises such as bars, clubs and licensed restaurants must not open during coronavirus. To complain about a licensed premises, you should contact the police using the non-emergency number 101. You can also do this online:
Workplace safety guidelines and social distancing
If your business can continue to operate, you must follow workplace safety guidelines and social distancing to protect the safety and health of everyone in your workplace, including your customers and others visiting the premises.
Doing what is reasonable under the current guidelines to protect your staff and members of the public will help you to comply with health and safety law.
Businesses must review their risk assessments and put in place measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The latest Public Health Agency (PHA) guidance should be considered as part of the risk assessment. An example of a COVID-19 risk assessment is available on the Health and Safety Executive NI Website.
To prevent the spread of COVID-19 all employers should:
- encourage employees to work at home
- ensure social distancing is maintained between persons in the workplace and in work vehicles
- put systems in place to ensure that if someone becomes unwell with a new continuous cough or a high temperature in the workplace they are sent home and advised to follow the stay at home guidance
- remind employees to wash their hands regularly throughout the day with soap and water for at least 20 seconds (or use hand sanitiser if soap and water is not available), and to sneeze into tissues and dispose of the tissues promptly – Catch it, Bin it, Kill it
- frequently clean and disinfect objects and surfaces that are touched regularly, using your standard cleaning products
- strongly advise and support employees from defined vulnerable groups to stay at home and work from there if possible
For premises open to the public additional measures could include:
- the use of additional signage to ask customers not to enter the premises if they have symptoms
- controlling entry so that the premises do not become overcrowded
- using floor markings and signage to help maintain social distancing and direct customers into lanes if feasible
- making regular announcements to remind customers to follow social distancing advice
- placing Plexiglas barriers at tills and counters as an additional element of protection between employees and customers if possible;
- encouraging the use of contactless payments where possible
- frequently cleaning and disinfecting objects and surfaces that are touched regularly by customers, for example door handles, display surfaces, counters, check outs, shopping baskets, trolleys
- frequently cleaning employee areas including work stations, backrooms, stock rooms, shared equipment such as keys, phones, tablets, lifting equipment
Visit other trusted sources for more information:
The most up to date guidance from the Public Health Agency (PHA)
Guidance for employees, employers and businesses (GOV.UK)
Advice on safety measures in the workplace (HSENI)
Guidelines for food businesses (GOV.UK)
Food delivery and takeaway guidance (CIEH) - PDF
Sources of guidance and support on the impact of COVID-19 (NI Assembly)
The UK Government is supporting businesses and their employees through a package of measures during this period of disruption.
As part of the government response to Covid-19, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy is seeking UK businesses and organisations with the ability to design, manufacture or supply the following, as well as those who have, or provide, medical training or logistics capabilities.
If your business or organisation can help, find out more and register your details
- Air Compressors/Pump
- Air Filter, HEPA Filters
- Check valves/one-way valves
- Electric Motors and motor controllers
- Flow Control valves
- Flow Sensors and Indicators
- Gas mixing valves
- Heat and moisture exchanging filters (HMEFs)
- Industrial Automation components (Safety Relays, PLCs)
- Linear actuators and controllers
- Oxygen Sensors and Indicators
- Power Supplies
- Pressure Regulators
- Pressure relief valves
- Pressure Sensors and Indicators
- Self-inflating bags
- Solenoid valves
- Tubing and fittings