Through the Lichfield & Tamworth shared waste service, Lichfield District Council and Tamworth Borough Council are counting down the top five blue bin mistakes local households make. In a bid to help residents from across Lichfield District and Tamworth Borough recycle more and stop contaminating loads of recycling, the shared waste team is counting down the five most common items that are mistakenly added to blue bins.

Coming in at number five is animal bedding and in at number four is nappies. Whether clean or used animal bedding and nappies cannot be recycled and should go in black bins. The third most common error is textiles, including old clothes, bedding and towels. The shared waste service is unable to recycle textiles and these should either go to a charity shop, if of good quality, or a textile recycling collection point.

The second most common mistake is food waste. All food and drink containers should be emptied and rinsed out. They don’t need to be spotless, but all food and liquid should be removed. And, the top blue bin no no is black bin bags. Recycling should be loose in blue bins or go in clear plastic bags. This could mean recycling is collected in a bin liner, which is emptied out into the blue bin. Putting black bin bags, food waste, textiles, nappies and animal bedding into your blue bin will contaminate the recycling and could mean that your blue bin is not emptied.

To find out what should go in each bin, visit  www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/bins. To download the Waste Less guide which sets out how to recycle, visit www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/wasteless.