Garden waste

Collection information and dates for garden waste.

Gardeners in most (but not all) of the county were able to pay to join the garden waste kerbside collection service in the 2019 season.

The 2019 season ran from early March and wil run until the end of November / beginning of December.  The final collections are scheduled to take place during the weeks commencing Nov 25th or 2nd December 2019 - depending on where you live.   The price for the 2019 season was £40 per bin and was the same whenever you join the scheme in the 2019 season.   We have stopped taking payments for the 2019 season.    

NB.  Paid for stickers were delivered by Royal Mail and were issued from w/c 21 January in plenty of time for your first collection.
If you subscribed to the garden waste collection scheme during 2019, you will receive a yearly invitation in late January 2020 or early February 2020 to re-join, complete with information on collection dates. If you do not receive your letter, please let us know. You can also take garden waste to any of our household waste recovery centres free of charge, or you could also try home composting.

Each season we start to take money from customers from  Mid January, but you will need to use your unique property reference number (GW- followed by 12 digits), supplied in your renewal letter.

Residents who received garden waste collections in the previous season will automatically receive a renewal email or letter during late January or early February prior to the new season.

Potential new customers may contact us to find out if they can be added to the route, and if so to make payment and arrange delivery of a bin from February.  Tel: 0345 600 6400

Our subscribers have welcomed this service as it saves them time and fuel, as well as mess in their cars and vans. 

You can also take garden waste to any of our household waste recovery centres free of charge, or perhaps you would like to try home composting.
To pay for your garden waste collection service, quote your reference number to pay:

Residents wishing to join the scheme in 2020 can get further information by calling 0345 600 6400 from January 2020. Residents who received garden waste collections in 2019 will automatically receive a renewal email or letter during late January or early February 2020.  The price for the 2020 season has not yet been agreed.  When announced in January 2020 the price quoted will be the season charge per bin, no matter when you join in the 2020 season.

NB.  Paid for stickers will be delivered by Royal Mail and will start to be issued from w/c 20 January in plenty of time for your first collection.
Residents choosing to pay for the service online, using a debit or credit card, will be automatically entered into a prize draw for a chance to win a refund of their yearly subscription. One customer will win per month between February and November.

Winners in 2019 to date are:
MC from Warkworth
J G from Cramlington
T W from Tweedmouth
S C from Blyth
E J  from Morpeth
B M from Prudhoe
DL from Darras Hall
D&A fron Cramlington
SB from Cramlington
CB from Seaton Suice
You can buy bags of compost from Northumberland County Council at your local household waste recovery centre.

Compost/ soil conditioner can be bought from our household waste recovery centres for about £3.30  per bag (2018 price). If there is none available at the time of your visit, bags can be ordered with expected delivery to the site between two to three days.

The compost is made from garden waste collected through our garden waste collection scheme.

Residents can buy compost in bulk from James Enderby (01434 602786 or 07500 821809).  James will quote on the basis of time and distance. 
Here we answer your frequently asked questions about garden waste.

Services are renewed annually in February. We will send you a renewal email or letter containing your unique 12-digit reference number that is required to pay for the scheme in late January / Early February.  You will then be able to pay online using your debit or credit card and that reference number which is unique to your property.
You can check online, if we collect from your area and are eligible to apply for your collection.

Our team asks for applications for garden waste collections to be submitted during February and March, though new requests will be accommodated throughout the rest of the year where possible. If we confirm we are able to collect from your area, you will be given a unique reference number that is needed to pay for the service.

We'll send existing customers an email or  letter each year, inviting you to renew your subscription, and you will be issued with a new unique reference number.
You can pay:
  • online using a credit or debit card (you will need your unique reference number)
  • at any of our customer information centres 
  • by phone on 0345 600 6400 using a credit or debit card
Upon receipt of payment you will be issued with a garden bin (if necessary) and a 'Garden Waste' bin sticker' - for the current season - will be posted to you, for you to fix on top of the bin. We can then easily identify your bin as eligible to be emptied throughout the paid-for season.

All residents who pay online will be automatically entered into a prize draw for a chance to win a refund of their season subscription. One customer wins each month between February and November, so the sooner you start paying your subscription online the more draws you can qualify for.

If you want to cancel the service you must notify us in writing or by email within 14 days of payment in order for us to consider any refund.  Please see the terms and conditions on our website. 
For more information regarding bin collection services, please click here.

What happens if my garden waste bin is missed
If we have missed your garden bin, every effort will be made to return to collect it, providing it was missed through our fault.  However, if it has been missed due to bad weather or other circumstances beyond our control, this may not always be possible.  Unfortunately, we cannot pay refunds or part refunds for missed garden waste bins.  
Yes No
Leaves Kitchen waste (such as fruit and vegetables*)
Grass Soil or rubble
Weeds General household rubbish
Small branches Plant pots or fence panels
Hedge Garden equipment, fittings or furniture.
Tree cuttings  

*Fruit and vegetable peelings may have been contaminated by cooking oil, meats or plate scrapings and therefore cannot be processed in the same manner as other garden waste. The animal by-product legislation means the ‘open-air windrow’ method of composting cannot be used to process kitchen waste, following strict controls implemented to safeguard animal health and prevent any foot and mouth or swine flu outbreaks etc. But you can put fruit and vegetable peelings into your own home composting if this isn’t to be used commercially/agriculturally.

On the day, please remember:

  • Your garden collection day may not be the same day as your regular bin collection day.
  • Put your bin out before 7am.
  • Place your bin at the side of the kerb, outside of your property.
  • Take your bin back once it has been emptied.
Putting the wrong materials in your garden bin will mean we may not empty it, and no refund or partial refund will be made.
There are no collections during winter months, from December to February, because of the limited amount of garden waste produced. It is considered bad for the environment and expensive on fuel to send vehicles out during those months when the tonnage collected will be very small and most bins are not being used.  Any waste produced during those months can be taken to any of our household waste recovery centres, you could try home composting or many gardeners just fill the bin and leave it ready for the first collection of the season.
Garden waste collected is delivered to either an on-farm composting facilities near  Hexham, or a central facility near Ashington.

There, it is shredded and turned by machinery, stored in long piles of material known as windrows, and monitored.

The compost is then bagged and sold at our household waste recovery centres, (£3.30 per bag in 2019, to be used as a soil improver on agricultural land, or sold for use in restoration projects and horticulture.  The charge made is to cover the processing, bagging and haulage costs to the companies who convert the waste into compost.
If you move house within Northumberland then we may be able to arrange that your garden waste contract is moved to the next property but it is best to speak with the Admin staff at your depot first.  Please contact us and ask for a call back from your local depot. , please contact us for more information.
NB. We are unable to provide a service both at your old house in addition to your new house unless extra payment is made.

If you leave the Northumberland area, then we cannnot permit you to take your council-owned garden bin with you.  We suggest therefore that you either agree to share the years cost with the new resident, that you leave it for the new owners to use  if they so wish at your expense, or that you let us know and cancel the service. We will then arrange for the bin to be removed.  NB. No refunds can be considered unless cancellation is within 14 days of payment date.