Lambeth Council’s recycling fines

Written by on March 10, 2011 in Uncategorized - 5 Comments


Pamphlets were posted through Lambeth letter boxes today announcing new rules for recycling, including fines for those who don’t separate their rubbish.

From April 4 2011, households will be monitored and fined up to £1000 by Lambeth Council if they fail to recycle. Refuse collectors will no longer collect bins from inside the boundary of houses. Instead, wheelie bins and orange bags must be put on the pavement by 6am on the day of collection.

The pamplet reads: “Our aim is to help change behaviour…As a borough we spend over £15  million each year on disposing of waste, but recycling waste costs half the amount of disposal.”

If residents do not use their orange bags (available from here), they will receive a series of warnings and could face fines if they continue to ignore these warnings.

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5 Comments on "Lambeth Council’s recycling fines"

  1. Ruth Jones September 30, 2011 at 10:26 am ·

    Hello…Yesterday (29th Sept) was household rubbish collection…I was absolutely stunned to see the household rubbish and the Orange recyling bags put into the one crusher. Chap going ahead for the wheelie household bins and another chap behind throwing the orange bags into a different wheelie bin, then placing both onto the same truck to be crushed. What is going on here ??? I decided to ring Lambeth Council to report what was going on…..Today (30 Sept) I had a phone call asking me if I could possibly have been mistaken, the intimation was I was wrong in what I had seen..Why was my name and telephone number given to these people by Lambeth Council ??? This guy who rang was most insistent that I had misunderstood what I had witnessed…”Did I note the Truck registration and description of the chaps etc”…I told him NO…. I had seen what I had seen and there is no doubt in my mind. Continued conversation was all about my possibly been mistaken and then I was informed that they could do nothing because they don’t know who’s truck it was etc I replied that ‘that’s not possible, admin records could give them this information at a click”. they must know who was doing the particular round/road….By this stage I was becoming a bit alarmed and terminated the conversation. My concerns are
    Who gave this contracted company my name and telephone number because they have no right to do this (data protection)
    I have subsequently asked around neighbours and family and apparently this is not an unusual occurence …Meaning…Gathering the household rubbish and recyling orange bags and throwing them into the one crusher…
    I can only draw my own conclusions regarding this….Its shocking, people go to a great deal of trouble to ensure the “right” thing is done and are even informed if they don’t they will be fined etc….Yet at the “end of the line” its the rubbish collectors who are flaunting every rule in the book.
    I have tried all morning to contact Lambeth Council and twice my call was terminated when I requested to speak to someone about this….

    I would appreciate your comments regarding this matter

    Ruth Jones

    • Tanja Raaste June 9, 2012 at 2:09 pm ·

      Hi Ruth,
      I was wondering if other people had noticed this. Until recently, where we live, near Tulse Hill, the rubbish has been collected in one truck, and the orange bags in another – usually at a similar time, but obviously quite separate.
      However, the last few weeks when I’ve happened to be home, I’ve noticed everything is being thrown into the same truck!
      I haven’t contacted the council yet, as I don’t have much time to pursue this, but starting a debate and contacting them would be good – it looks like they are no longer recycling at all.

  2. Penny April 3, 2011 at 4:28 pm ·

    If you haven’t heard yet, there is a wonderful organisation called
    Lambeth Freegive ( ). The goal of Lambeth Freegive is to reduce waste by connecting people in the London borough of Lambeth who are giving and getting unwanted items for free in their own towns. It’s all about reuse, recycle
    and keeping good stuff out of streets and landfills. Whether you’re
    looking to discard or acquire an item, Lambeth Freegive is the place to do it. Working or easily repairable goods such as furniture, clothes,
    appliances, computers, toys, televisions, beds, books, baby stuffs, sofas or anything that is taking up space can be passed on to someone else in your community. This group is open to all residents of Lambeth in London who want to recycle their unwanted items. Or maybe you’re looking to acquire something yourself. It’s completely free to join and everything posted must be free. Lambeth Freegive Website Link:

    How Lambeth freegive group works:

    1. You have a television or clothes or furniture or printer or toys you
    were going to throw out.
    2. You join Lambeth Freegive group.
    3. You post an offer on Lambeth Freegive group.
    4. People respond to you if they are interested.
    5. You pick a recipient and arrange for them to collect the item.
    6. They take the item away.
    7. You let Lambeth freegive group know that the item is no longer
    available by posting an item TAKEN message to the group.

    8. If you need an item you can request one on your local freegive group in the same way by posting an item WANTED message to the group and if someone has what you’re looking for they will contact you to offer it.

    This is a great idea. Encouraging people to reuse and recycle things by
    giving them away and not sending them to the rubbish bins, streets and
    landfills. If we all try to recycle, we will make a difference.

  3. Andy March 24, 2011 at 12:38 pm ·

    I’ve not read the leaflet but what you describe is a change in the way people are treated, they now have to put bins outside their boundaries whereas before they didn’t. If this is the case, then Lambeth may well be committing a criminal offence under the Equality Act 2010 by creating “indirect discrimination”.

    The Equalities website guidance defines indirect discrimination as follows –

    “Indirect disability discrimination happens when there is a rule, a policy or even a practice that applies to everyone but which particularly disadvantages people with a particular disability compared with people who do not have that disability, and it cannot be shown to be justified as being intended to meet a legitimate objective in a fair, balanced and reasonable way.”
    Therefore, if a resident is physically unable to put a bin out, Lambeth’s refusal to collect would be criminal, their actions could not be defended as being reasonable.
    Please check the leaflet as if it does not indicate some special arrangements for the elderly and disabled then Lambeth definately have put themselves in jeopardy.
    Another aspect is that if they do fail to collect waste for the disabled, then they are in breach of their statutory duty under the Enviromental Protection Act and would have two potential criminal liabilities hanging over them.
    Do you think that Lambeth may have overlooked the change in the discrimination laws?


  4. Tom Harle March 14, 2011 at 4:04 pm ·

    Don’t think we’ve had the leaflet yet, but is there anything about how this will work with flats and other buildings with a shared refuse area?

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