30 Aug 2016 12:00

From 30th September, re3 recycling centres will be introducing charges for the disposal of some non-household waste as part of a programme to make essential savings and provide a more efficient and fair waste management service.

Non-household waste includes items from the repair and alteration to homes and waste created from landscaping or garden remodelling. Councils are entitled to charge for the disposal of these types of waste and, in order to produce much-needed savings, re3 has taken the decision to do so. Residents can still dispose of all other household waste free of charge at the recycling centres.

By introducing charges for items like soil and rubble, plasterboard, asbestos and gas bottles, re3 can cover the cost of managing those types of waste without having to subsidise it from already stretched budgets. The savings made may also help mitigate some of the cuts in council funding and may help protect other frontline services.

Working alongside the introduction of commercial and commercial-type vehicle permits, the new charges will also act as a deterrent to those firms who try to dump trade waste for free at the recycling centres.

The new charging scheme is bringing re3 in line with what is happening at recycling centres elsewhere.  A full list of charges is now available in re3’s Waste Acceptance Policy, available from Payments will be in multiples of whole bags, e.g. rubble, or sheets, e.g. plasterboard, whilst charges for loose materials will be based on the size and the proportion of a fully loaded vehicle e.g. 50% or 100%. Items such as toilet pans, sinks, toilet cisterns and sink pedestals will be charged as single items.

Payments will be by credit, debit or pre-paid payment card only, and visitors to the sites will be asked to agree the charge and pay before depositing their waste.

Residents who wish to dispose of household waste in a commercial or a commercial-type vehicle, or with a trailer between 1.8 and 3m in length, will also need a permit to visit a re3 recycling centre.

re3’s recycling centres in Bracknell and Reading will continue to accept all other household waste free of charge including garden waste, white goods, large and small electrical items, wood, bric-a-brac and bulky household waste such as furniture, carpets and mattresses. Items that are brought in and are still in good condition are donated to Sue Ryder to fundraise for hospice care.  For more information on what is accepted at re3 recycling centres, please visit

Bracknell Forest’s Executive Member for Environment and Chairman of the Joint Waste Disposal Board, Cllr Mrs Dorothy Hayes MBE said: “re3 area residents have been assisting us by displaying their recycling centre permits on their windscreens when they visit the centres, and we are now asking them to help us to make essential savings by paying a small charge for the disposal of waste that most people only usually generate from time to time, when renovating or remodelling their homes.

“We are charging just to cover the costs of processing this waste, and are keeping prices at reasonable rates, especially when considering the alternatives like hiring a skip.”

Reading Borough Council’s Lead Councillor for Neighourhoods, Cllr Liz Terry said: “It has not been an easy decision to introduce these charges. We know that the recycling centres are popular with residents, but we are not are not legally obliged to deal with non-household waste and in the current climate of severe budget cuts, we can no longer afford to accept it free of charge.

“Our spending priorities are now being focussed on the most essential areas, and by making savings in waste management, we may be able to divert funding to frontline services that help vulnerable residents.”

Wokingham Borough Council’s Executive Member for Environment Cllr Angus Ross said: “Along with limiting recycling centre access to re3 area residents only, and introducing commercial vehicle permits, this new scheme is being used as a way to improve efficiency and make much-needed savings.

“It will help us to reinforce the crackdown on trade waste dumping while still providing a service for those residents who need to dispose of non-household waste when doing DIY around their homes.”

As with the other recent visitor access changes, any developments in fly-tipping will be closely recorded and monitored, and re3 will use this data to consider suitable responses to unlawful waste disposal. However, most people act responsibly when disposing of their waste. Fly-tipping is a criminal offence and people who dump their rubbish illegally are liable to face prosecution. If you have any information about fly tipping please report it to the councils or Crimestoppers.

As the charges are designed to cover the costs of processing non-household items only, they still represent excellent value as a way of disposing this kind of waste. However, in addition to recycling centres, DIY waste can also be disposed of through the hire of skips or skip bags, and re-usable building materials can be offered online via websites like Freegle and Freecycle.  Specialist, licensed waste management companies can assist in the disposal of non-household items like asbestos.

For the list of charges for non-household waste, and for more information on all the re3 recycling centre changes, please see the re3 Waste Acceptance Policy on

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