Friday, 11 May 2012

Doing our bit!

Dear Recycling bags,

You know I think the world of you. Your predecessor was more than a bit crap. It blew away every week and rarely managed to keep a plastic bottle or cardboard tube contained. But then you arrived. Easy to use, easy to tie in a knot to keep all the contents enclosed (even on the windiest of days), and if you blew off that was fine too. The collectors would pick you up, I didn't have to helplessly try to retrieve you from a neighbour's garden or from under a car. Recycling bags, you make recycling a joy, not a chore.

I know every borough has its own methods of tackling recycling, but I have to say I like the way Redcar and Cleveland do it! I like the fact they have provided you, recycling bags.

We (by which I mean our council) have always seemed to  be at the forefront of recycling initiatives. I base this knowledge purely on the fact that when visiting friends/relatives around the country we could say things like !"What you don't recycle plastics yet?" and when they proudly showed us their newly council delivered recycling utensil we could say "yeah we've had one of those for ages". To put it bluntly, we were smug. Smug recylcists.

But no other boroughs I visited had quite managed to cotton on to how brilliant the see through roll of recycling bags were. And you are brilliant aren't you?

It was so easy. We religiously used you fortnightly. No drama. And just when we were running out, there you were - a new role - delivered by the friendly recycling men.

But then they stopped that.

It was too high risk. It appeared there was a household somewhere, probably, who wasn't recycling and just had rolls of you popping up every month and they would just keep putting you in a forgotten cupboard somewhere.

So we had to ring a number when we needed you. And the kind recycling men would drop you off. But they stopped that too, as it seemed some thrifty-but-naughty people were using you as bin bags to try and save a few quid.

So then we had to go to the Library to get you. But that was still a bit easy for the sneaky-but-thrifty people to do.

So they gave the library a spreadsheet and we had to tell them our address every time we got you.

And, it seemed, finally,  everything was going ok...

But then the Tories came into power and they said "MAKE THEM PAY!"

So they started charging £2 a roll and The FH said "no more" And our lovely love affair was over.

So I tried to replace you. I tried using Charity bags, like many others, because we have SO many of them I just wanted to use them. But quite rightly, they wouldn't take the charity bags. I mean it wasn't fair on that poor charity worker who thought his look was in one morning and bounded to the depot with a full van only to discover every single was full of milk cartons and toilet roll inners.

Then I tried black bin bags. But they wouldn't take those either. Because they have to be able to see your contents. Heaven forbid a rogue tin can or a newspaper gets inside and the pedantic recycling man unknowingly takes it away with the plastics!

So I went behind The FH's back and I went to library and I bought you. But it wasn't that flimsy little roll for £2 - it was a MEGA roll! Two years worth to be exact! The FH couldn't complain about that. You were a bargain!

So to all the  people who are no using you because those pesky Tories started charging... It's not that bad really, £2 every 2 years to help save the planet - I mean you pay a lot more that to have your regular rubbish shipped off to a landfill to sit and barely decompose for, like... FOREVER!

And finally, to end on a high I just wanted to let you know recycling bags, you have made difference. When I was at school a friend's dad would collect tin cans and take them hom to crush and send off to be recycled. We thought he was  wierdo. He was just ahead of his time. Before I left teaching I saw some school kids set up and run the school's recycling system as they were astonished the school didn't have one in place when they were all recycling at home.

I think you've pretty single-handedly  much changed the outlook of the youth. Ok the green box and the blue bag have played their part, but we know who's the brains of the operation.

Much Love

Your number 1 fan.

For more of my letters click here. For a blog that contains ONLY letters click here.


  1. Man I want some of those recycling bags now- we have a recycling bin in our kitchen and would make sorting it so much easier. Redcar and Cleveland way ahead of its time!
    Letters are the way forward with blogging I have decided! Hurrah!

  2. Hi, always enjoy stopping by your blog, have given you an award :-) no worries if you don't take part but please accept with best wishes anyway xx