07/11/17: Star signs are good for new recyling project

Feedback from Breckland Council's strategic waste partner Serco indicates that their new 'Recycling Stars' initiative, which awards stars to Watton and Carbrooke households for correct recycling, is already making an impact. The contractors, who have been inspecting the contents of every black recycling bin in this area since the project began last month, report there has been a noticeable reduction in bin contamination by incorrect items.


Recycling Stars awarded to households can be converted into cash for local schools when the project ends in March 2018.


Cllr Paul Claussen, Breckland Council Executive Member for Place said: "It's fantastic to see that the project is already making a difference. I'm told that there is a real buzz building up in the participating schools - and a friendly rivalry. The children have really got on board with our initiative and are encouraging their parents to recycle correctly and earn as many stars as possible to help their school win the top prize." 


Stars awarded to households can be taken to local collection points, where they are picked up regularly and will be totalled after the project ends. The three participating schools will each receive £500 and the school with the most stars* will be awarded an additional £500.


Breckland Council is running the initiative in partnership with Norfolk County Council who have visited participating schools to explain the importance of recycling correctly. Children also learned about the common recycling mistakes such as not washing plastic food containers, or putting recyclable items into plastic bags - this means that items cannot be recycled and have to be disposed of another way. 


Cllr Martin Wilby Chairman of Norfolk County Council's Environment, Development and Transport Committee, said: "The Norfolk Waste Partnership has been putting in considerable effort on a number of fronts to reduce contamination, which is a real problem across the county and nationally. It is very heartening to learn that this project seems to be having a positive impact and it is particularly encouraging to see young people so engaged."


More information about the Recycling Stars project can be found on the Breckland website www.breckland.gov.uk/recyclingstars. This project is one of a number of initiatives in which the Council is working with the wider Watton community; these include litter picks, a community fridge and work to help tackle anti-social behaviour in parts of the town.