Christmas tree recycling

Shropshire Council and their waste contractor Veolia are launching a Christmas tree ‘amnesty’ this new year, to make sure trees don’t go to waste.

This means that for the first few weeks of January 2014 you can recycle real Christmas trees simply by putting them out for collection along with your garden waste.

All real Christmas trees collected with the garden waste will be ‘recycled’ (actually they get sent for composting) and turned into valuable soil improver for local farmers.

Steve Charmley, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member responsible for waste management, said:

Now that the 12 days of Christmas are coming to an end, decorations will be coming down. One of the things we need to consider is what to do with the old Christmas tree.  It’s a fact that in the UK we get through 7 million real Christmas trees every year, and this means that there will be around 35,000 dead Christmas trees left over in the Shropshire Council area alone. To put it another way, one in four households will have a tree that they want to get rid of. So we urge everyone to recycle their old tree.”

Top tips

  • Make sure you put the tree out on the correct day for your garden waste collection. Check your collection timetable via  
  • Make sure your tree is out on the kerbside by 7am as the collection crews start work early.
  • If you can, please try to get the tree into your garden waste bin to make it easier for the collection staff.
  • If you cannot fit your tree into the garden waste bin, you may on this occasion leave the tree next to your garden waste bin, but please take care to avoid blocking the pavement or causing a trip hazard.
  • To help the collection staff handle them and make sure that they fit into the vehicles, please cut up any extra large trees to a maximum 5 foot (1.5m) lengths.
  • Please make sure you remove any tinsel, fairy lights and other decorations first.  These are not compostable!
  • You can also recycle your Christmas tree by taking it to your local Household Recycling Centre and putting it in the garden waste pile.

More information on recycling your waste from the Christmas and New Year period is available here


James Thompson James Thompson

Waste Prevention Officer, Waste Management, Shropshire Council

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