Electrical kerbside collections in Solihull

New, simple and easy-to book collection service for recycling small electricals in project with funding from Material Focus 

Most of us have a stash somewhere of unwanted electrical kit – devices that don’t work or we no longer use, cables we can no longer identify. Millions of such items are thought to be hoarded in homes across the country. Often, if we get rid of small electricals they just go in the bin. We might feel bad about that but it takes too much effort to work out any better way to dispose of them… 

Well, not any more.

Cllr Hawkins with the 'Recycle your electricals' lorry panel and poster

Cllr Hawkins with the ‘Recycle Your Electricals’ lorry panel and poster featuring HypnoCat, courtesy of Solihull Council

Solihull Council is launching a collection service for small electricals. Some 216,000 residents across the borough will be able to book collections via the council website, as well as by phone or through the council’s contact centre.     

The council expects to collect and recycle at least seven tonnes of small electrical items through the scheme. A campaign to advertise the scheme will featuring the pink, fluffy HypnoCat in leaflets, banners, posters and on the sides of lorries. The council website and social media channels will also take part in spreading the word. 

Anything with a plug, battery or cable can be recycled. Unused items can be found new homes. Broken electrical devices can be fashioned into something new, with examples ranging from children’s playgrounds to life-saving equipment. As well as benefits to the new users of these items, recycling significantly reduces the volume of potentially hazardous waste and its environmental impact. 

The service has received £45,000 from Material Focus, a not-for-profit organisation that leads the wider Recycle Your Electricals campaign and has provided funding for more than 40 such initiatives across the UK. These include kerbside collections like the one in Solihull, as well as drop-off points at schools and community centres. In all, it will reason 400 new collection points plus kerbside collections for 5.5m UK residents.   

Cllr Ken Hawkins, Cabinet Member for Environment and Infrastructure at Solihull Council, says: ‘This is a fantastic new initiative for Solihull which by recycling electricals will help save the planet’s valuable raw materials like gold, copper, aluminium and steel, and help us reach our net zero carbon targets. 

‘We’re always looking for ways to make doing the right thing easier for our residents and this really couldn’t be any easier. Residents can just book a collection for free online and then leave their small electricals bagged up and ready for collection. 

‘We’ll be reminding residents about the new service throughout the month with eye-catching posters and social media featuring HypnoCat – the Recycle Your Electricals mesmerising pink, fluffy mascot!’ 

Scott Butler, Executive Director of Material Focus, adds: ‘We are pleased to support Solihull’s kerbside collection of small electricals that addresses the pressing issue of e-waste. By investing in improved collection and drop-off services and exploring new recycling methods, we are taking a significant step towards creating a more sustainable future by making it easier for 10m more people to recycle their electricals.’ 

In related news:

BT converts 60,000 street cabinets into EV chargepoints 

Tech recycling scheme in Edinburgh

NASA beams cat video 19m miles across space


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