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Residents urged to dispose of garden waste sensibly during coronavirus crisis

Published Wednesday, 08 April 2020

East Northamptonshire Council (ENC) is asking residents to consider options such as the council’s garden waste scheme or composting waste.

This is instead of lighting bonfires,and to be more considerate to neighbours and protect the respiratory health of the vulnerable during the pandemic.

With the temporary closures of local Household Waste Recycling Centres, residents may be struggling to dispose of garden waste, especially with more people working from home and the recent nice weather. But ENC is urging residents to think of others and consider the alternative options which are available across the district.

The council’s garden waste scheme allows residents to sign up for £55.00 a year and receive a 240L bin that is emptied once a fortnight, alongside the household’s recycling bin.

Alternatively, residents could consider purchasing a compost bin via a company like or storing garden waste in a safe, dry place until local HWRCs re-open.

Cllr Steven North, Leader of East Northamptonshire Council, said:

“We understand that residents are spending more time in the garden and may be looking for other ways to dispose of garden waste, but we urge everyone to consider all options on offer.

“As a council, we have a duty to all residents to provide suitable waste options and have an excellent garden waste collection service, which at present is still running as normal or residents could consider using a compost bin.

“If you must have a bonfire, we urge you to be responsible and follow advice from the experts which is there to help protect us all.”

If you have no other option but to light a bonfire, the ENC’s Environmental Health team advise that you follow these tips:

  • Never burn household rubbish, plastic, rubber, furniture foam or tarred felt;
  • Do not light a bonfire if it is wet or windy;
  • Never leave a bonfire unsupervised or leave it to smoulder. Douse it with soil or water if necessary;
  • Avoid burning at weekends and on Bank Holidays, warm sunny days or other times when your neighbours may want to enjoy their gardens;
  • Site the bonfire so that it causes least disturbance to your neighbours; this may include taking into account the wind direction;
  • Only burn dry material, this will reduce the amount of smoke produced.

Detailed advice on bonfires can be found at

For more information about ENC’s garden waste scheme and to sign up, please visit