Recycling at Christmas

Although Christmas might be looking a little different this year, we can still celebrate it sustainability, supporting friends, family and local businesses in the community.

Christmas recycling and waste collection day changes

There will be Christmas and New Year collection day changes. During the week running up to Christmas, your bins will be collected one day earlier and collections due on New Year's Day will be collected later. Please see table below for full details:

Table showing Christmas recycling and waste collection changes
Normal collection day Revised collection day
Tuesday 22 December 2020 Monday 21 December 2020
Wednesday 23 December 2020 Tuesday 22 December 2020
Thursday 24 December 2020 Wednesday 23 December 2020
Friday 25 December 2020 Thursday 24 December 2020
Friday 1 January 2021 Monday 4 January 2021

Garden waste (brown bin/sack) collections and bulky waste collections suspended over Christmas

Garden waste collections will be suspended between Tuesday 22 December and Friday 1 January. Collections will resume as normal from Tuesday 5 January.

Our bulky waste service will be suspended between Tuesday 29 December 2020 and Friday 8 January 2021. Collections will resume as normal from Tuesday 12 January 2021.

Deck the halls

It’s time to put the Christmas decorations up but what do you do if your Christmas lights have lost their spark? What if your batteries need replacing? Recycle your small broken electrical items and batteries by leaving them on top of any bin lid in separate clear bags on your collection day.

If you live in a flat with shared bins, please recycle your small electrical items using collection banks, and batteries at drop off locations, located across the city.

T’is the season to be jolly aware of recycling!

Over Christmas we generate around 30% more waste and most of this can be recycled. In Oxfordshire alone we generate 2,500 extra tonnes of waste over the festive period!

Festive recycling tips:

  • Flatten cardboard boxes before recycling to save room in your recycling bin
  • Ensure cardboard is placed inside of your bin or sack (wet paper can't be recycled)
  • Place extra recycling next to your bin or sack in a clear bag for collection
  • Remove ribbons, bows and other ornaments before recycling wrapping paper
  • Do the scrunch test to see if your Christmas wrapping paper is recyclable or not (paper with glitter, foil and plastic can't be recycled

Up to 80% of your waste can be recycled. Please try to recycle as much as possible. Extra rubbish that doesn't fit in your green bin or lilac sacks will not be collected.

Oh, bring us a figgy pudding

More food waste is produced at Christmas than any other time of the year. Follow our top tips below to reduce your food waste this Christmas (sprout bubble and squeak anyone?):

  • Slice Christmas cake and freeze it with greaseproof paper between each piece so you don't have to defrost an entire cake
  • Freeze cooked turkey and ham and thaw in the fridge to use in casseroles, curries, pies and sandwiches
  • Freeze leftover grapes from your Christmas cheese board and use them as ice cubes in your New Year's Eve drinks. You can also freeze wine (if there is any left!). Fill up your ice cube trays and use in drinks or for cooking with

See Love Food Hate Waste for more ideas.

Remove the guesswork by using a portion planner to find out how much to cook, depending on who’s able to come for dinner this year, Covid-19 dependant. This will reduce waste and save you money!

And if you do have peelings, stalks or leftovers that you can't eat, recycle them in your food caddy. Line your caddy with newspaper, a compostable or plastic bag, or pop into your caddy loose. Your food waste will be turned into electricity and fertiliser!

Christmas tree recycling

6 million Christmas trees are sold each year in the UK. That’s enough to stretch end to end from London to the North Pole and back!

Recycle your real, unadorned Christmas trees (free from pots, baubles and tinsel) on your green/brown bin collection day from 5 January until 29 January 2021. They will be shredded and turned into compost for local farmlands.

If you live in a flat with shared bins, or want to recycle your real tree sooner, you can take it to one of our 12 collection points located all over the city. Please see our map below.

Artificial trees

If your artificial tree is no longer usable and can't be reused, drop it off to a recycling centre.

Just for fun

Need something to do with the kids over the festive period? Have some fun with our festive recycling colouring sheet. Print it off, colour it in, and pop in your windows or on your bin for the collection crew! ;

Christmas bin tag

If you received our Christmas bin tag, once you've finished with it, be sure to take it off your bin, recycle it, and wash your hands after!