Waste services and COVID-19

There may be changes to your usual recycling and waste services in Suffolk. Precautions are being considered and may be put in place to ensure Coronavirus is not spread via your waste. We will keep this page and our social media channels updated.

During the crisis we have managed to maintain waste and recycling collections throughout the county and we thank our waste collection crews and those working behind the scenes at the energy from waste facility and the recycling sorting facility, who have all made this possible. Please follow this link for a joint statement on behalf of the waste industry. 

Due to the Coronavirus outbreak and potential increases in staff sickness and/or absentee levels, certain recycling and waste services may be impacted. This may result in changes to your normal bin collections at short notice.

How to get rid of your waste if you are either self-isolating or confirmed to have Coronavirus

Any individuals who are self-isolating, either as a precaution or because they are confirmed to have Coronavirus, should follow this advice to get rid of their household waste to ensure the virus is not spread.

  • Individuals should place all personal waste such as personal protective equipment (PPE), used tissues and disposable cleaning cloths, securely in a plastic bag or bin liner.
  • This plastic bag should then be placed in another plastic bag and securely tied.
  • These bags must be stored separately to other waste for at least 72 hours before being placed in the general rubbish collection

Regular household recycling and waste should be treated as normal.

Recycling centres re-open by appointment only

A new online booking system is now in place at all of  Suffolk’s Recycling Centres.  This appointment-only system is necessary to help reduce traffic disruption and queueing on roads around the sites and help manage additional demand on the waste sites. There are also new temporary restrictions and guidelines in place at all sites to ensure the safety of staff and public.

Find out more and book your Recycling Centre slot here.

COVID-19 safety frequently asked questions:

Why don’t site staff and the public wear face coverings or gloves at the Recycling Centres?

Face coverings do not need to be worn at Recycling Centres and the 2m social distancing rule applies on all sites. 

Face coverings do have to be worn, however, when you visit either the Bury or Foxhall Re-use shop in line with guidance at other retail/ charity shop venues.

Gloves are not required on site but are recommended for safe handling of waste. Staff wear gloves to handle waste or to clean surfaces. Single use gloves are used to assist in medical emergencies on site. Staff have access to hand washing facilities and wash their hands and apply hand gel regularly.  

Why are there more than 6 people at a time at the Recycling Centres?

The rule of 6 applies for social gatherings and does not apply to Recycling Centres. Covid safe numbers have been assessed on each site, which is reflected in the number of bookings available. We ask that only one person should unload vehicles unless two are needed for heavy items.

Why is there no hand gel available on sites?

Staff have hand washing and gel available for their own use.  Public should provide their own hand gel and are encouraged to wash hands before and after visiting.

A list of general Suffolk Recycling Centre frequently asked questions can be found on our Recycling Centre booking page (at bottom of the page)

Changes to recycling and waste collections

Garden Waste Bin collections have now been re-instated in all districts across Suffolk. For ideas to help manage your garden waste in the interim please visit our Top Tips page. More information on compost bin offers can be found here www.suffolkrecycling.org.uk/reduce-your-waste/home-composting

All local councils across Suffolk are working hard to minimise the impact on your recycling and waste collections and we appreciated your understanding in these challenging circumstances.

For the latest information from your local District or Borough Council please follow the links below:


West Suffolk

East Suffolk

Babergh/ Mid Suffolk

You can also keep up to date by following @suffolkrecycles on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

Waste Management Advice for Care Homes in Suffolk

Here is the current waste management guidance for Care Homes.

Care Homes in Suffolk should refer to this guidance which has been developed by Public Health Suffolk. Should you require further information please contact your waste collection provider directly