These are the do’s and don’ts of recycling in Wirral

Many of us may be unaware that the items we put in our recycling bins aren’t actually recycleable.

One of the problems we face is that there is no consistency between different councils and this can lead to confusion; what might be recyclable in one council area may not be in a neighbouring council area.

At the bottom of this article, there is a full list of what can be recycled if you live in the Metropolitan Borough of Wirral and a list of some of the items that can’t.


A couple of easy things to remember are:

Plastics: The ONLY plastics that can be recycled are bottles (including bottle tops) – they should be rinsed first – no other plastics are currently recyclable if you live in Wirral. The following plastic items CAN’T be recycled: Carrier bags, supermarket meat trays, crisp packets/sweet packets, fruit & veg punnets, etc.

Metals: Food & drink tins/cans & metal jar lids CAN be recycled – they should be rinsed first. No other metals can go in your kerbside recycling bin, e.g., sheet tin foil, metal food trays (meat from supermarket, takeaway trays etc.)

Glass: Jars & bottles (including lids) CAN be recycled. All other glass can’t be recycled, e.g., light bulbs, drinking glasses, mirrors, window glass etc.

Paper: Pretty much all paper and card can be recycled, including window envelopes. There are a few exceptions, e.g., Pringles style tins (as they are a mixture of card & foil/plastics), Tetra Paks (e.g. milk cartons & soya milk cartons), tissue paper/ kitchen roll etc., food containers (pizza boxes, etc.) if they are greasy or have food remnants in them.

These items can go in your kerbside recycling bin:

  • cans (drinks and food)
  • card
  • cardboard boxes
  • cardboard packaging
  • catalogues
  • cereal boxes
  • corrugated card
  • cosmetic bottles (glass and plastic)
  • egg boxes (card)
  • envelopes (you don’t need to remove the plastic window)
  • fabric conditioner bottles
  • glass bottles and jars (tops can be put back on)
  • greeting cards
  • junk mail (removed from any plastic bags)
  • magazines (removed from any plastic bags)
  • medicine bottles plastic and glass (empty)
  • metal jar lids
  • newspapers
  • paper
  • pizza boxes (clean – no grease or food)
  • plastic bottle tops
  • plastic bottles (including milk bottles)
  • shampoo and shower gel bottles
  • telephone directories and Yellow Pages
  • toilet roll tubes
  • unused wallpaper
  • washing powder boxes
  • wrapping paper (not foil)
  • bleach bottles
  • cleaning bottles
  • soap and toothpaste boxes

Exapmles of items that can’t go in your kerbside recycling bin:

  • plastic carrier bags
  • supermarket meat trays
  • crisp packets/sweet packets
  • fruit & veg punnets
  • tin foil
  • metal food trays/takeaway trays
  • light bulbs
  • batteries
  • drinking glasses
  • mirrors & window glass
  • pringles style tins (as they are a mixture of card & foil/plastics)
  • Tetra Paks (e.g. milk cartons & soya milk cartons)
  • tissue paper/ kitchen roll etc.
  • card food containers (pizza boxes, etc.) if they are greasy or have food remnants in

Further reading:

Main image credit: Lisa Fotios