Recycling - Frequently asked questions

Why can't I put all sorts of plastic into the plastic skips on the main recycling sites?

Different density of polymers are used in the very many types of plastic available. There is a stable market only for plastic containing the codes PET, PETE and HDPE. To make it easier we ask that plastic bottles only are placed in our skips as these predominantly contain these codes. To include other plastics would require further sorting and threatens a successful and popular service.

There are no commercial end markets available at the moment for mixed plastics. This may be achieved in the future once the collecting and sorting infrastructure is capable of handling the mixed plastics without detriment, either financially or operationally, to the recycling systems.

Why are there no plastic facilities on the smaller recycling sites?

Plastic is high volume low weight material which is expensive to recycle and as a result, to make it viable has to be collected using the larger skip type containers.

Why are the holes in some of the skips so high?

Unfortunately, these holes have to be high as we need to get as much material in before they need to be emptied. If we were to put the holes lower down then the material would fall out through the holes as the quantity inside increases.

Can I put all type of tins and cans in the can bank?

Yes all food and drink tins are accepted as well as empty aerosol cans.

Can users please ensure that items or bags of unsorted waste are not left at these sites.

For more information or advice on reducing, re-using and recycling in Cumbria log onto

A local branch of the global Freecycle movement, where people offer unwanted items for free rather than taking them to landfill has been opened. The North Lakes Branch covers much of Allerdale: Keswick, Cockermouth and northern Lake District area.  There are neighbouring groups already in Carlisle, Kendal, Penrith and West Lakes.  Please follow the link below for more information.

The Freecycle movement is a "grass roots" initiative, dependent on co-operation within local communities, and fully complements any recycling initiatives of Local Government.

Carlisle City Council logo   Cumbria County Council

Copeland District Council logo   Eden District Council logo


Contact us

0303 123 1702

Allerdale Borough Council
Allerdale House, Workington, Cumbria,
CA14 3YJ