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Blue bin - mixed recycling

Recycle Right for Barnet

You can find out what can and can't be recycled and help us to recycle right!

In Barnet, we want to ensure that only the right items are collected and sent for recycling.

Incorrect items placed in recycling bins is called ‘contamination’. Contamination can affect the quality of the recycling collected and the processes at the recycling facility.


Your 240 litre blue bin is for mixed recycling and is collected weekly. You do not need to sort the items.

Please remember to place your bin at the boundary of your property by 6am on your collection day.

What you can recycle

Mixed recycling:

  • cardboard (e.g. cereal boxes, cardboard boxes, egg boxes)
  • cartons (e.g. fruit juice cartons, milk cartons, Tetra Pak)
  • food tins and drinks cans (e.g. soup tins, fizzy drink cans)
  • mixed glass, bottles and jars (e.g. drinks bottles, jam jars - lids and tops are recycled either left on or off)
  • mixed paper, including loose shredded paper (e.g. directories, books, newspaper)
  • plastic bottles (e.g. detergent and fabric conditioner bottles, drinks bottles, cooking oil bottles, bleach and cleaning fluid containers, shampoo bottles - lids and tops are recycled either left on or off)
  • plastic tubs, pots and trays (e.g. margarine and ice cream tubs, yoghurt pots, fruit punnets, food trays). Please remove any film lids and absorbent pads in the bottom of trays and put these into your general refuse bin.

You can download a full A-Z list of what can be recycled and where. If an item is not listed, unfortunately it cannot be recycled.

All items for recycling should be rinsed where appropriate. Food packaging must be free from food. Please note that we cannot recycle items containing food residue.

What you SHOULD NOT put in your blue bin

Please do NOT put nappies, carrier bags, black bags and crisp packets in your blue bin.

They cannot be recycled, so please place in your black bin.

  • nappies: cannot be recycled and should be placed in the black bin at all times.
  • food waste: this cannot be recycled in the blue bin. Please place in your black bin until further notice.
  • textiles: do not place clothes and textiles in your blue bin. Textiles can be taken to the Summers Lane Reuse and Recycling Centre, charity shops or textile recycling banks. If you cannot recycle your textiles in any of these ways, contact us using the details below.
  • wood: please do not place this in your blue bin. Wood can be recycled at the Summers Lane Reuse and Recycling Centre.
  • electrical items: you should not place electrical items in your blue bin. These items can be recycled at the Summers Lane Reuse and Recycling Centre. Small electrical items can also be recycled at various electrical recycling banks across the borough or you can arrange a free collection of larger household electricals by contacting Clearabee on 0330 088 1085.
  • polystyrene: This cannot be recycled, please place in your black bin.
  • clinical waste: do not put any clinical waste items such as syringes, needles or other sharp items in your recycling bin as these are extremely dangerous in the manual processing of materials. These items cannot be recycled. You can arrange a clinical waste collection by completing the online form.
  • batteries: place household batteries in a clear bag on top of the lid of your refuse bin on your collection day.
  • black bags and other plastic items:  Please do not place black bags in your blue bin. Also plastic wrapping, bubble wrap, cling film, plastic tubes (i.e. tomato puree, toothpaste) and toys cannot be recycled in your blue bin.
Thank you for helping us to recycle right! By placing the right items in your blue bin, your recycling will be sorted and processed into new materials.

Find out more about what you can do with your plastic carrier bags and what happens to your recycling.

Additional blue bin

If you need an additional blue recycling bin you can request one by using the new, additional or replacement bin or sack order form or by contacting our Street Based services team using the contact details below.

Clear recycling sacks

If you cannot physically have a blue bin on your property, we can provide a clear sack recycling service.

We deliver batches of recycling sacks on request, and you can put the same items in your sack as in a blue bin. If you have run out of sacks, you can order more using our new, additional or replacement bin or sack order form. You will only be able to use this form if your property has been assessed as requiring clear sacks.

If you do not currently receive clear sacks but think you should, please contact us on 020 8359 4600.

Recycling tips

You can find out more information about recycling around the home in this video.

Related Links

Download documents


  • Street Based Services
  • Oakleigh Depot
    Oakleigh Road South
    London, N11 1HJ
  • Tel: 020 8359 4600
  • Opening hours
  • Mon - Thurs 9.00am to 5.15pm; Fri 9.00am to 5.00pm

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