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Baby items

Babies and toddlers don`t need their clothes for very long. And they are usually in excellent condition when they are outgrown. If you don`t know any new or expectant mothers to pass them on to, why not donate them to a local charity shop -see our Charity Shop and Reuse Map, but always check first to see what the individual shops will accept.
Don`t forget that reusable nappies are the environmental choice that can save you money. You can also give items away for free online on websites like Freegle or Freecycle. If you want to make some extra cash. you could try selling items online via the many sell and seek sites that are currently available on social media platforms. You can also take baby clothes and pairs of shoes to the textile banks at your local recycling centre.

Baby food pouches

Baby food pouches are made of more than one material so are not easy to recycle. None of our local councils collect them for recycling. Terracycle has a kids food pouch recycling scheme which accepts all brands of baby food pouches, kids yoghurt pouches and pouch caps.

Barbecues - disposable

Whilst foil may be recycled, in your area (check with your local council), disposable BBQ foil is likely to be heavily contaminated with food residue as well as having burn damage. If you can`t make use of it yourself, for example as a garden plant pot saucer, it will be best to put it in with your household waste. Ash from lumpwood BBQ`s can be used in the same way as wood ash. Ash where other fuels have been added, such as briquettes is best discarded. If you are big on having a BBQ why not buy a proper reusable one instead, or build a permanent one out of brick?

Bathroom Suites

These can`t be recycled but can generally be picked up by your local Council if they offer a Bulky Waste Collection. You may be able to sell a bathroom suite yourself or offer it free on a reuse site like Freegle.

Batteries - car

Car batteries may be taken to any of our Household Waste Recycling Centres. Scrap metal merchants and garages may also accept car batteries. Do handle with care. Car batteries contain acid. You can also ask the garage to take back the old one when you buy a new battery.

Batteries - household

Every person in Britain uses an average of 10 batteries a year, meaning every year we throw away over 600 million batteries.

It`s easy to think you are doing the right thing by popping dead batteries into your general household waste bin, but did you know that they can cause fires in waste processing plants if you do?

Household batteries can be recycled by returning them to a collection point in a supermarket, DIY centre or even your local shop. Anywhere that sells more than 32kg of batteries a year has to provide battery recycling collection facilities in store. You can find out your nearest collection point by entering your postcode in the locator at Recycle Now - you may have to ask in store when you get there as they`re not always easy to find.

All household batteries can be recycled, including button cell batteries found in watches and other small electronics.

You can also recycle battery packs from laptops, mobile phones and power tools. These can also be recycled in the in-store recycling banks in most shops. All batteries can be recycled at your local Household Waste Recycling Centre (HWRC). Car batteries can be taken to your local HWRC.

For useful information about batteries and battery recycling please have a look at the Take Charge website

Bedding - see blankets and bedding


If your bike is unusable, it can be taken to you local Household Waste Recycling Centre. Carlisle and Brampton HWRCs donate the bicycles to a reuse organisation called ReBike or they can be donated directly at their site at Unit 12, Old Mitchell Dryers Factory, Denton Holme, Carlisle, CA2 5DU

Biscuit tins

Metal biscuit tins can be put out in your kerbside recycling collection with food and drinks tins or recycled at your local recycle point. Plastic biscuit boxes can also go out in your plastic kerbside recycling. Both are worth keeping to reuse at home though - they make excellent containers for almost anything from cakes to nails and screws.

Biscuit wrappers

Biscuit wrappers are not collected for recycling by either of our Cumbrian Councils. TerraCycle offers the Biscuits and Snacks recycling programme.

Black plastics and foam food trays

Black plastic food trays and packaging are not usually recyclable. More and more shops are starting to use different colours which can be more easily recycled. Check with your local council to see if they will accept black plastics in their kerbside collections. Black plastics generally should go into your general household waste bin if you can`t reuse them for anything else.

Blankets and bedding

Charity shops may accept old blankets and bedding sets, see our Charity Shop and Reuse Map. They generally won`t take used pillows or duvets though. Some animal shelters may accept these so check in your local area.

Blister packs from medicines

These are not recyclable in any of the Counties` kerbside collections. You can drop off your empty medicine blister packets in participating pharmacies and Superdrug stores in Cumbria. Check for local drop off points at www.terracycle.com

Boat flares

If you have out of date boat flares you should contact the supplier you bought them from to see if they will take them back. It may be worth checking if a local port or marina will accept them. There are also specialist hazardous waste companies that will dispose of them for you but there will be a charge for this service. Check with the Royal Yachting Association for more information.

Boilers, household
Household boilers can be taken to your local Household Waste Recycling Centre.

Charity shops collect second-hand books see our Charity Shop and Reuse Map Some of the Household Waste Recycling Centres and local Recycling Points also have book banks.

Bread bags

Neither Westmorland & Furness Council or Cumberland Council currently collect soft plastics for recycling. Many supermarkets offer a collection point instore for soft plastic packaging and wrappers. Please check with your local store.

Bric a brac

Charity shops are always on the look out for crockery, pictures, ornaments etc. You may not like something or have use for it anymore but there is a good chance someone else will. See our Charity Shop and Reuse Map. Alternatively have a go at a car boot sale and see how much you make.

Building/Renovation/DIY Waste/Hardcore/Rubble/Bricks

DIY waste, bricks and rubble from your household can be taken to your local Household Waste Recycling Centre. However, if you wish to take it in a car towing a twin axle trailer or a van or a utility vehicle then you will require a permit to do so. Reasonable amounts of building & renovation type waste will need to be placed in the appropriate signed skip. Gypsum and plasterboard waste is required to be separated and placed in the correct skip. For guidance please contact us on 0300 373 3300 if you live in the Westmorland & Furness Council area or 0300 373 3730 if you live in the Cumberland Council area.

Bubble wrap

Neither Westmorland & Furness Council or Cumberland Council currently collect soft plastics for recycling. Bubble wrap has loads of reuse possibilities though. Use it for packaging around delicates for house moving, insulation for a cool greenhouse or even just for the kids to jump on. Many supermarkets do offer a collection point instore for soft plastics packaging and wrappers. Check instore to see if that includes bubble wrap. Check out the Recycle Now website for more information on soft plastics.


These may be accepted by charity shops (please check with the individual shop), or you can use them in all sorts of crafts.

If you have a question about resources or recycling please call one of the following numbers
Cumberland Council: 0300 373 3730
Westmorland & Furness Council: 0300 373 3300
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