Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Produced in December 2021 by Dr. Pat Watson, an East Garston resident, motivated by COP26 and David Attenborough’s report of biodiversity loss, greenhouse gas and single use plastic pollution to find out and share how our area can move towards a Circular Economy. The Circular Economy involves reusing existing materials and products as long as possible, reducing waste to a minimum (instead of the Linear Economy of take, make, use and discard). The more we recycle, the less raw materials (eg oil, metal ores, paper fibres) are required to make the next generation of new products.


Reducing what we buy is the best way to reduce our waste, as the rapidly-developing recycling industry is not yet meeting our demand for recycling.

• borrow, buy goods second-hand or rent
• share resources with neighbours eg patio cleaner or strimmer
• take turns going to a specialist shop or mini-recycling centre 
• look for trustworthy advice eg Ethical consumer and Which and be aware of greenwashing (where companies claim false eco credentials) and the more subtle climate-dooming (it’s so bad, there’s no point even trying to change). 
• to reduce food packaging, buy from local markets (eg Lambourn on Fridays), deli-counters or specialist no-packaging shops taking your own containers and bags.



Before you throw something away that you don’t want any more see if

• it can be repaired eg East Garston Repair Cafe.
• it can be modified for a new purpose? eg ripped jeans turn into shorts
• it can be sold eg eBay, Facebook marketplace.
• it can be given away for free:
– to a neighbour, family or friend
– via Freecycle, freegle or local facebook group Household Waste Save (covers Lambourn to Great Shefford)
– to a specialist company, eg Greenmachine Computers in Ramsbury
– to a charity shop/collection, eg The Community Furniture Project Newbury.


The more we recycle, the less raw materials (eg oil, metal ores, paper fibres) are required to make the next generation of new products. However please don’t “wish-cycle” (putting items into recycling collections that you wish were were recycled, rather than those that actually are) as this may reduce the quality of the recycled product and increases the dumping or incineration of rejected collections in the UK or abroad.

Kerbside Recycling (collected by West Berkshire Council)

  • Newspaper and magazines – recycled in Kent
  • Mixed paper and card – may be sent abroad
  • Glass – recycled in Essex
  • Plastic bottles – recycled in Dagenham
  • Aluminium & steel cans – recycled in UK
  • Clothes & Textiles (not shoes, duvets & pillows) – sorted in UK, may be sent abroad
  • Garden waste – £50/year, composted in Padworth
  • Food waste – collected in compostable bags in green wheelie bin, composted with garden waste

The value of the above materials covers the cost of collection, sorting & recycling (except garden waste).

Mini-recycling centres, West Berkshire Council Eg Hungerford Station Car park

  Plastic pots, tubs & trays (eg yoghurt pots, margarine & sweets tubs, ready meal & meat trays, fruit punnets, etc)
  Food & drink tetrapak cartons, paper tubes with metal end of Pringles etc
  Small electrical items
   Excess paper/card

Newtown Road Recycling Centre, Newbury (‘the dump’)


Other Recycling

The Recycle Now (government/WRAP) national website gives both general and local information, or register with for more specific local information.

Soft plastics eg carrier bags, bread & crisp bags, chocolate and biscuit wrappers, baby & pet food pouches, etc is collected in-store by some larger supermarkets as part of the UK Plastic Pact. Tesco and the Co-op (but not Lambourn) currently take the widest range. See Recycle Now for more details. Please not, they can’t take biodegradable plastics bags, or plastic with food stuck on.

Shops are increasingly accepting recycling eg, batteries in supermarkets, pill packaging and toiletries empties in Boots Newbury, coffee cups in Costa.

This was compiled in partnership with Hungerford Environmental Action Team.

If it is helpful, please share with others, or better still, create your own poster tailored to what you or your business use.

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Covering: Hungerford, Marlborough, Wantage,   Lambourn, Newbury, Thatcham & Theale