Household items in the kitchen

Recycling and rubbish in Portsmouth

Do your bit for the environment by recycling, reusing and reducing your waste

Recycling and disposing of your rubbish responsibly is good for the environment, and keeps our streets tidy.

Most houses in the city have their rubbish collected weekly, and recycling every fortnight. Depending on where you live, you may also have a food waste bin to recycle kitchen scraps. 

Find your collection days on the council website.

What can be recycled in your council collection

Only certain things can be recycled, and it might be different to what you recycle at your home address. You can recycle the following in your green council bin, as long as they are clean, dry, and loose - not in carrier bags:

Recycle these in your green bin:

  • Drinks cans
  • Plastic bottles, like drinks, shampoo and cleaning product bottles (please rinse and put lids back on) 
  • Paper such as newspapers, magazines, envelopes, junk mail
  • Food tins
  • Clean cardboard, such as cereal boxes and greetings cards (please break down larger boxes)
  • Aerosol cans

Small electrical items (such as hairdryers and toasters) can also be put out alongside your normal recycling collection. Remember to:

  • Remove any glass, such as lightbulbs
  • Put items in a normal-sized carrier bag
  • Place the bag on top of the lid of your recycling bin or box on collection day.

What should be taken to a local recycling point

Some other items should not go in your recycling bin but should instead be taken to your nearest local recycling point:

  • Glass
  • Clothes, shoes, and other textiles
  • Tetrapaks (like drinks cartons)
  • Dental products like toothbrushes, toothpaste tubs and electric toothbrush heads can be taken to the University’s dental academy or Package Free Larder on Elm Grove
  • Carrier bags can be recycled with soft plastics at most large supermarkets, such as Tesco in Fratton Park.

Food waste collections

Some areas of Portsmouth are part of a food waste collection trial, turning food waste into  biomethane and fertiliser. Your house may have a grey caddy, which you can put kitchen scraps in for collection once a week. This includes:

  • All uneaten food and plate scrapings
  • Tea bags and coffee grounds
  • Out of date or mouldy food
  • Raw and cooked meat and fish, including skin and bones
  • Shellfish and seafood shells
  • Dairy products such as cheese
  • Eggs and egg shells
  • Rice, pasta and beans
  • Baked goods such as bread, cakes and pastries
  • Fruit and vegetables, including raw and cooked vegetables and peelings

Find out more about the food waste trial on the Portsmouth City Council website.

General rubbish

Your general rubbish is collected once a week on your street’s collection day.

For properties with forecourts

If you have a forecourt and wheelie bins:

  • Only use black wheelie bins provided by Portsmouth City Council - any other bins, or anything outside of the bin won’t be picked up.
  • Put all rubbish in tied sacks or plastic bags inside the bin. 
  • The bin lid should be able to fully close.
  • Put out your wheelie bin by 7.00am on your collection day.
  • Take your bins in as soon as they’re collected to avoid obstructing the pavement.
  • If you need a bigger bin, please contact the Council who may be able to upgrade the size

For flat-fronted properties

If you don’t have a forecourt and wheelie bins:

  • Buy sturdy bin bags and make sure you tie them properly. 
  • Double wrap anything sharp and items that may attract animals, like food.
  • Put out your rubbish by 7.00am on your collection day. Don't leave it outside on the pavement all week as this will attract pests but also complaints from neighbours.
  • Put your rubbish at the boundary where your property meets the pavement.
  • Standard waste allowance is three black sacks per week. If you need more allowance, please contact the Council who may be able to provide extra waste stickers.

For communal flats

If you live in a flat or another type of communal residence, you will have a communal rubbish collection. You need to put your rubbish in the big wheeled bins that you will find in your bin storage area. You can put your rubbish down a chute if you have one. Communal rubbish bins are usually emptied at least once a week.

See the council’s website for information on how to put your rubbish out for collection.

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