How do you dispose of a defunct toaster in Rochford District?

June 6, 2009 by  

Or anything else that is not listed under Recyclable or Non Recyclable on RDC’s web site !!

An old toaster is not listed so what do you do with it now?  You can’t put it in any of the three bins.  Answers on a post card would be appreciated. Or rather please enter a message under Comments.

One of my residents has had a problem with the Contaminated Bin Stickers and I am at a loss at what to advise given his recent experience.

He put two old metal number plates from his boat in the Recyclable Bin together with an aluminium rod from an old wardrobe thinking incorrectly that they were recyclable. His bin was left unemptied this week because of this error. In fact his bin will not be collected for a fortnight.  Because of this error he will have to take his next two week’s recycables to a recycling point on foot or more likely by car.  At least he was not fined.

He was told by the Council that these should be put in the Non Recyclable bin. But that’s wrong too because the list on the top of the bin and on the Council Web Site does not include these materials.

So what does he do now with the number plates and the aluminium?  If he leaves them in that bin it will be refused next week.

And what do we all do with old, broken down toasters?  Get in the car, burn some fossil fuels, pollute widely and end up at the tip in Rayleigh after how many miles?  I suppose people will just leave them lying around in the garden or the front of their houses near their bins until there’s a pile or you are accused or creating an eyesore?



3 Responses to “How do you dispose of a defunct toaster in Rochford District?”
  1. Editor says:


    I have spoken to the Council and the first advice was that the aluminium rod, the number plates and a toaster will have to be driven to the Rayleigh “tip”. I asked what non drivers would do? That nonplussed them. Would Arriva let you carry waste on the bus anyway? Or you could pay £15 per per item to be collected.

    I was told that the responsible thing to do would be for residents to fit in a trip to the Rayleigh “tip” with other journeys for other reasons. Oh I wish that everybody had enough time to have the luxury to make such detailed plans to avoid unnecessary polluting journeys !!

    Under pressure the Council said that these could be put in the Non Recyclable bin but I pointed out that this did not have the written authority of the Council and until I had that in writing I could not possibly advise residents to do this.

    I have asked that if this is what the Council now recommend then I want it in writing that policy has been changed.

    I will wait and see but I doubt it.

    Has this scheme improved things environmentally? Yes, but it has created new one unless the Council are able to change published policy.

  2. Editor says:

    No reply, so I have sent a very clear question to the Councillor Boss for the Environment, Michael Starke who incidently represents Hawkwell too.

    Hi Mike

    A resident has asked me a simple question and I am struggling, having contacted the Council, to answer this in a pragmatic way.

    If I put it to you could you answer with a simple Yes or No?

    From the Council’s web site

    Materials that cannot be placed into your compostables and recyclables bins should be placed into your non-recyclable bin for collection, these include:

    (list 1)

    Black bin liners
    Bubble wrap
    Cat litter
    Cling film
    Crisp packets
    Chocolate wrappers/biscuit wrappers
    Broken glass (except jars and bottles)
    Light bulbs

    Please note, the following will not be accepted in the non-recyclables bin:


    Heavy glass
    DIY materials
    Hot ashes
    Building materials

    So Materials that cannot be placed into your compostables and recyclables bins should be placed into your non-recyclable bin for collection provided also they do not appear in List 2 above?

    Yes or No please?

    If the answer is No then what can a resident do to dispose of such materials if;

    1. they are drivers
    2. they are non drivers

    Sorry to bother you Mike but I need a very clear answer please which can be fully relied upon.


    John Mason

  3. John Mason says:

    Well here it is from a telephone conversation I had Alan Lovett, Street Scene and Open Spaces Manager,Rochford District Council.

    The position could be as simple for some residents as I suggested. If a material is not listed as banned from a non recyclable bin then it can be put in. BUT, a big but, everything that goes into the non recyclable bin goes straight to landfill.

    “Items such as number plates and aluminum are not general household waste items and would be better disposed of responsibly at the Essex Recycling Centre for Household Waste in Rayleigh (where other types of metal can be recycled by County).”

    The same goes for the toaster; it can be recycled if you drive over to the facilities at Rayleigh and Stock Road in Southend where Alan tells me that if you show some ID with your residency of Rochford District shown it will be OK.

    It is argued by Alan that it would not very responsible to put items that could be recycled into landfill. So the responsible resident would drive over to a local council facility to recycle these small items.

    But I am waiting for the kick back from the environmentally minded resident who might want to ask what the environmental trade off is between landfill and recycling but at the cost of burning fossil fuels and pollutants. Is it positive or negative in terms of benefits?

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