Recycling small electricals can make a big difference

This story was published 6 June 2022

Market day roadshows and a temporary library drop-off service will be running throughout June to encourage residents to recycle broken or unwanted small electrical appliances.

Taking small electricals to household waste recycling centres

We are running a campaign that aims to reduce the number of small electrical items being thrown in the bin or hidden away at home.

Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRCs), which are operated by Yorwaste on behalf of the county council, accept items such as kettles, hairdryers, toasters and electric toothbrushes free of charge. Anything with a plug, battery or cable can also be recycled, as well as battery powered items including calculators, torches and toys. 

In a drive to increase the number of broken and unwanted electricals being taken to HWRCs, 20 libraries across the county will temporarily be collecting small electrical items from June 8 to July 8. Participating libraries will also be giving away tubs to store used batteries, which will be available while stocks last.

The North Yorkshire Rotters will be collecting small electrical items and giving away battery tubs at market roadshows on the following dates and locations:

  • Knaresborough market from 9am to 2pm on Wednesday, June 8
  • Easingwold market from 9am to 2pm on Friday, June 10
  • Kirkbymoorside market from 9am to 2pm on Wednesday, June 15
  • Skipton market from 9am to 2pm on Friday, June 17
  • Whitby market from 9am to 2pm on Tuesday, June 21
  • Selby Market Cross Shopping Centre from 9am to 2pm on Thursday, June 23
  • Leyburn market from 9am to 2pm on Friday, June 24
  • Wildlife Day at Stillingfleet Lodge Gardens from 11am to 5pm on Sunday, June 26

The 20 libraries taking part are Catterick, Colburn, Filey, Harrogate, Knaresborough, Leyburn, Malton, Nidd Plus, Northallerton, Pickering, Richmond, Ripon, Scarborough, Selby, Skipton, Starbeck, Stokesley, Thirsk, Whitby and the Supermobile library.

County Councillor Derek Bastiman, Executive Member for Waste Management, said: “We hope this initiative will increase awareness of our Household Waste Recycling Centres as a place where broken and unwanted small electrical appliances can be taken for recycling.

“It’s astonishing to think that across the UK, households are hiding 527 million unwanted electricals and that if all these old electrical items were recycled, it would cut as much CO2 as taking 1.3 million cars off the road!

“Recovered plastic and metals like gold, copper, steel and aluminium can be used to make new products – from bicycles and children’s play areas to life-saving equipment. It’s a very easy way for us all to make a difference by reducing the demand for new raw materials.

“The library drop-off service and market day events throughout June will make it easier for many people to drop off items that don’t work anymore and can’t be repaired. But, if you struggle to get to a Household Waste Recycling Centres please ask a friend or neighbour to take your broken appliance the next time they go and I would encourage residents who do visit our Household Waste Recycling Centres to ask anyone they know who doesn’t drive if they need any help.”

Household Waste Recycling Centres have new pink boxes to collect very small items such as electric toothbrushes, torches and toys. There’s also new, bright signage surrounding the collection cages and fencing. You can find your nearest Household Waste Recycling Centre.

Laptops, tablets and smartphones that still work can be dropped off at participating libraries and donated to the Reboot scheme.

Please check opening days and times for the libraries taking part.