What goes in your bin

Orange bins or sacks - recycling

Orange sacks are no longer available to collect from Council premises. Please compact your recycling: crush, squish, stomp on, tear up and make smaller anything you can to fit more into your recycling bin – the more space you save, the more recycling you can fit in.

If the orange lidded bin is full before collection, you can put out extra recycling next to the orange bin in a secure container (like a clear sack or cardboard box) so it does not blow away and this will be collected.

Any recycling put out in black bags will not be collected.

If you need assistance with your recycling, please contact recycling@bedford.gov.uk or 01234 718060.

Orange lidded bin

What you can put in your recycling bins or sacks

Paper, cardboard and cartons:

  • newspapers
  • magazines
  • junk mail
  • envelopes
  • greeting cards
  • cereal boxes
  • food and drink cartons (Tetra Paks)
  • ready meal boxes
  • cardboard packaging

Plastic food packaging:

  • plastic food containers
  • plastic packaging
  • plastic bags
  • plastic bottles and tops
  • yoghurt pots and lids
  • margarine tubs and lids
  • meat trays
  • fruit punnets (containers)

Metal packaging:

  • food tins
  • drinks cans
  • aluminium foil and trays
  • empty aerosols

Please wash dirty food and drink containers, squash items to save space, and place items loose in the bin.

Green bins - garden waste

Green lidded bin

What you can put in your garden waste bin

  • grass cutting, plants and weeds
  • flowers, prunings, hedge clippings
  • leaves and bark
  • vase plants and pond plants

What you can’t include in your garden waste bin

  • soil and rubble
  • vegetable peelings and kitchen waste
  • plastic bags, plant pots and polystyrene trays
  • animal bedding and pet waste
  • general household waste
  • persistent and noxious weeds (Ragwort, Japanese Knotweed, Spear Thistle, Creeping Thistle, Broad Leaf Dock, Curled Dock)
  • fake plants

Alternatively you may wish to consider purchasing a home composter. or take your garden waste to a household waste recycling centre.

Black bins - general waste

Black lidden bin

What you can put in your black bin

Black lidded bins are for your non-recyclable household waste only, including food waste.

What you can’t put in your black bin

  • uncontained liquid waste
  • commercial/business waste
  • tyres
  • waste electrical and electronic equipment
  • paint
  • soil 

Many items can be taken to the Household Waste Recycling Centre on Barkers Lane, please visit our recycling site webpage for more information.

If you have clinical waste such as diabetic sharps, this must be disposed of using our specialist clinical and hazardous collection service.

Battery recycling

We collect used household batteries as part of our ongoing efforts to increase recycling rates.

  1. Put your used batteries in a small, clear plastic bag and seal it when full.
  2. Place the sealed bag on top of your black or orange lidded bin or sacks on your normal day of collection.

Which type of batteries can be recycled

  • 6V
  • D
  • C
  • AA
  • AAA
  • 9V
  • Button

We cannot accept car or other industrial batteries as part of this scheme.

Waste and recycling guide

For more information on what can be put into your bins or sacks and where other items of household waste can be taken for recycling download our waste and recycling guide (PDF).

Our waste and recycling policy statements (PDF) set out our approach to the collection of waste within Bedford Borough.