Free Clothes Recycling Scheme Now Available

Service picks up your unwanted clothes for free and give them to charity

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The service, provided by the charity TRAID, is currently operating in West Putney, East Putney, Thamesfield, Fairfield and Southfields wards, but the whole borough is expected to be covered by the end of June.

The charity will collect direct from your door at a time convenient to you. All you have to do is book a collection by phone, email or at, and TRAID will come and collect your unwanted items. The service is completely free, but TRAID asks that you donate at least one binbag-sized bag.

You can donate clean, good quality clothes, paired shoes, accessories and linen.

The council's keen to encourage people to donate unwanted clothes, because they are often wrongly put in recycling bags. The Smugglers Way recycling plant cannot accept textiles, so the bag is classed as 'contamined.

The council has to pay twice for any contaminated recycling - firstly to sort it out and then to dispose of it along with other general rubbish at the energy from waste plant at Belvedere, Bexley. On rare occasions, when the level of contamination is too high, an entire lorry load of mixed recycling has to be disposed of.

Currently, around 17 per cent of the contents of the orange sacks Wandsworth sends to Smugglers Way are contaminants, and almost a quarter of the contents of orange banks are non-recyclable items.

The only things that should be recycled in orange bags or banks are:

Paper and card/cardboard (excluding shredded paper)
Glass bottles and jars
Plastic bottles, pots tubs and trays
Cans, tins and empty aerosols
Food/drinks cartons (e.g. TetraPaks)
Food residue should be rinsed off before recycling and lids should be removed from bottles. Get full details of what can and can't be recycled at

April 23, 2013