Waste and recycling changes over Christmas and New Year

SA Updated
Waste and recycling changes over Christmas and New Year

South Hams District Council is running on a delayed timetable for bin collections over the festive period. 

Collections over the festive period will be delayed due to the three bank holidays. 

See your updated collection dates in this table: 

Collections will return to normal in the week beginning Monday, 16 January.

South Hams District Council has said that they cannot recycle "cards containing glitter or plastics, or any wrapping paper (except plain brown paper)".

A spokesperson explained: "We can only accept pieces of cardboard under 75 cm long. Anything larger will need to be taken to the household waste recycling centre, as it won't fit on the vehicles."

The SHDC website also gives advice on how to "reduce, reuse and recycle" this Christmas.

It says: "There are lots of things you can do to produce less waste during the festive season. We've collected some hints and tips for the most common items.

Advent Calendar

❄ Avoid single use calendars

❄ Buy a reusable calendar and add homemade sweets and treats

✔ Cardboard

✔ Foil (scrunch it into a ball first)

✔ Plastic trays



❄ Send an e-card instead

❄ Old cards can be reused as gift tags - just cut them up

✔ Cards with no glitter, stuck on bits or shiny bits

✘ Glittery cards, cards with shiny bits or stuck on decorations


Foil Trays & Packaging

❄ Avoid single use trays

❄ Use a reusable roasting tin

✔ Foil trays (please scrape off grease and rinse)

✔ Foil wrappers (please scrunch into a ball)

✘ Plastic lined foil - Grey bin (If you can't scrunch it into a ball or it doesn't stay scrunched, it's probably plastic lined)


Food Packaging

❄ Try options with less packaging

✘ Crisp packets, sweet wrappers and film wrappers - Grey bin


Wrapping Paper

❄ This year, why not gift experiences rather than 'stuff'

❄ Reusable gift wrapping is a good option, and there are lots of choices available

✔ Brown paper

✘ All other wrapping paper and sticky tape - Grey bin



If you currently have a food waste collection, please recycle as usual. If not, please compost or place in your grey bin.

❄ Plan your portions with this handy planner from Love Food Hate Waste

❄ Be creative and cook up your leftovers into something new

✔ Turkey, chicken or meat carcasses

✔ Uncooked or cooked food waste

✔ Fruit and veg peelings, nutshells and fruit stones


Mince Pies

❄ Make mince pies at home

❄ Make leftover mince pies into something new - what about mince pie crumble for Boxing Day?

✔ Cardboard packaging

✔ Foil cases (please rinse them and scrunch them together into a ball)

✔ Plastic Trays

Sweet Tubs

❄ Make your own sweets and treats at home.

❄ Tubs and tins can be reused for storage, or go in your recycling sack

✔ Foil cases (please rinse them and scrunch them together into a ball)

✔ Plastic cases

✘ Plastic wrappers - Grey bin


Online Delivery Packaging

❄ Buy local

❄ Use cardboard for crafts, or upcycle it into storage around the house

✔ Cardboard

✔ Make sure cardboard is less than 75 cm long - anything larger, please take to the recycling centre.

✘ Bubble wrap and polystyrene - Grey bin


Christmas Cracker

❄ Make your own at home

❄ Look for sustainable alternatives

✔ Crackers with no glitter, foil or stuck-on decorations


Drinks Containers

❄ Glass bottles can make lovely vases, or you could insert fairy lights to make a light feature.

✔ Plastic bottles, their lids and metal lids from glass jars and bottles

✔ Juice cartons

✔ Glass bottles and jars

✘ Corks (natural and plastic) - Grey bin


❄ Make your own at home

❄ Look for sustainable alternatives, and avoid buying new decorations every year

✔ Please take broken fairy lights to the local recycling centre.

✘ Tinsel and damaged baubles - Grey bin

✘ Homemade decorations (treated with paint or preservatives) that have reached the end of their life - Grey bin 


Find out more on the SHDC website southhams.gov.uk/Christmas-Recycling



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