A rubbish idea gets results

Ealing finds a way for flat owners to recycle.
Thousands of Londoners have been excluded from kerbside recycling because they live in "awkward" flats. Now a west London council appears to have solved the problem that has stumped local authorities across the capital for years.

From November, 7,000 householders in Ealing who live in small blocks of flats - apartments above shops or homes on red routes - will be able to recycle on their doorsteps.

The properties were previously considered unreachable because of a lack of outside space in which to store recycling bins and problems for the collection lorries being able to stop on red routes.

Home-owners will be given a supply of clear plastic bags in which to put paper, cardboard, cans, aluminium foil, aerosols, glass and plastic bottles, for a weekly collection.

'This system is simple, and the easier you make it the more people will recycle'

A trial scheme collected more than 84 tons of recycling from 1,000 homes over a two-year period. Councillor Jason Stacey, leader of the council, explained: "It has been a bit of a nightmare but this system is simple, and the easier you make it the more people will recycle."

Dr Michael Warhurst, Friends of the Earth’s recycling spokesman, welcomed the project."This has been a problem for years and had an impact on recycling rates."

Recycling rates across London are increasing but in boroughs with a large proportion of flats, such as Tower Hamlets, Newham and Lambeth, are falling behind.

On average, the capital recycles about a quarter of its waste - far below the 34.5 per cent national average.

Follow us on Twitter @HomesProperty and Facebook