A Guide to Recycling in Leeds

5th April 2024

By Graham Matthews

Recycling in Leeds helps keep the largest city in Yorkshire as green as Roundhay Park, Woodhouse Moor, and Temple Newsham. However, in recent years household recycling rates in Leeds have fallen to around 35%. This is despite there being many options to recycle in Leeds for homes and businesses, which this guide covers.

The good news is the city now sends less than 3% of household waste to landfill – mainly thanks to the innovative recycling and energy recovery facility (RERF) that opened in late 2016. And sustainable initiatives are popping up all over, such as the Climate Innovation District and a range of zero-waste shops and cafes.

Discover everything you need to know about recycling in Leeds from your home or business with information about what, where, and how to avoid your domestic or commercial waste going to landfill. Recycle in Leeds the right way.

Leeds station and River Aire.

Household waste recycling in Leeds

Leeds City Council oversees household waste recycling across the city. This includes providing homes with a green recycling bin, and regularly collecting and recycling waste put in them. Leeds Council also operates eight household waste recycling centres (HWRCs) across the city and wider LS region (including in Otley and Wetherby).

Homes in certain areas of Leeds receive a brown bin for garden waste too, depending on your postcode. The council offers an unwanted household item collection service for bulky and other items not accepted in your green recycling bin. The service is currently free, but it is limited and due to high demand collections may not be available when you want.

At Divert we provide a range of household recycling services for homes anywhere in Leeds. This includes the removal and recycling of large items at a time that suits you with all waste diverted away from landfill. Get a free quote and find out more about each recycling service in Leeds:

What can you put in 
recycling bins in Leeds?

You can put various items in your green recycling bin as long as they’re clean and dry. These are the materials and examples of rubbish you can recycle in your green household bin in Leeds:

  • Aluminium (drink cans and food tins)
  • Aerosols (empty deodorant cans)
  • Bubble wrap
  • Cardboard (cereal boxes, tissue boxes, and food packaging)
  • Carrier bags
  • Cartons (including Tetra Pak)
  • Foil (including food containers and takeaway trays)
  • Paper
  • Plastic bottles, tubs, and pots (water bottles, food tubs, and yoghurt pots)
  • Plastic types 1 (PET), 2 (HDPE), 4 (LDPE) and 5 (PP)
  • Stretchy plastic bags and wrapping

You cannot recycle black plastic (including bags), brown plastic, glass, polystyrene, shredded paper, electrical items, wood, or garden waste in your green bin. Take these to your nearest HWRC or bottle bank to recycle responsibly.

How to recycle glass in Leeds

There are more than 700 glass bottle banks across Leeds. Clean and dry any used glass bottles and jars from your home and then drop them off at your local bottle bank. Many of these are in car parks of supermarkets, pubs, sports clubs, leisure centres, and other council-run car parks.

Recycling glass in Leeds is important as it’s infinitely recyclable and you cannot put it in your household green recycling bin. Any colour of glass bottle or jar is accepted at the bottle banks. You can also recycle glass waste at any HWRC in Leeds. Use this bottle bank map of Leeds to find your nearest one.

Glass waste from businesses in Leeds is a type of commercial waste, so must be removed by licensed waste carriers. Businesses can arrange glass waste collection in Leeds with Divert. We provide free glass bins with no delivery or rental fees – you just pay for collection – and all glass is recycled.

birds eye view of Leeds town hall.

When are Leeds recycling days?

Recycling bin collection days in Leeds vary depending on where you live. Some households receive fortnightly green bin collections while in other areas it can be monthly. Check your recycling day in Leeds online. Simply enter your postcode and select your address to see your upcoming green bin collection days and dates.

Leeds recycling centres

There are eight recycling centres in Leeds. Anyone who lives in Leeds can use them to dispose of household waste and you can visit in a car or on a bicycle. You must have a commercial vehicle permit to use any HWRC in Leeds in a van, a large vehicle, or if you have a trailer attached to your car.

Commercial recycling in Leeds is only accepted at the recycling centres in Kirkstall and Seacroft. These are the addresses for all Leeds recycling centres:

Other recycling options in Leeds

There are bring sites all over Leeds where you can recycle other materials from your home alongside glass. These include recycling banks for old clothing, paper (including newspapers and magazines), and small electrical items (such as old phones, laptops, tablets, toasters, kettles, and other small appliances and devices).

Bring sites are small recycling sites with one or more banks to recycle such domestic waste. They’re often located in pub, supermarket, and council car parks. They’re ideal for people who can’t drive to a HWRC and an easy way to recycle household waste that you can’t put in your green bin in Leeds.

Find your local bring site in Leeds

Roundhay Park in Leeds.

Business waste recycling in Leeds

Businesses in Leeds must arrange collections of all rubbish they produce by licensed waste carriers, including all recyclable materials. You should use a range of bins to separate recycling in your organisation. This benefits the environment and saves your company money, as you’ll pay less landfill tax as part of your disposal costs.

At Divert we can help businesses in Leeds working in any industry and of any size and age with your waste recycling. We provide free bins for recycling in Leeds such as glass, cardboard, plastic, and mixed recycling. Find out more about our business recycling services in Leeds:

Call 0333 444 0118 or contact us online today for a free quote for waste collection and recycling from your business in Leeds. Prices are tailored to your needs and there’s no obligation to proceed. One of our team can answer any questions and find a suitable solution for you.

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