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Best Partnership Project for Recycling: Warwickshire County Council

Through a landmark partnership with the third sector, Warwickshire County Council outsourced the operation of selected recycling centres to a social enterprise whose proceeds are benefitting hundreds of grassroots community groups through a grant-making community foundation.

The first scheme of its kind in the country, it resulted in significant financial savings for the council, allowed it to keep its household waste recycling centres open and boosted recycling rates.

Warwickshire Community and Voluntary Action (CAVA) and the Heart of England Community Foundation created Warwickshire Community Recycling (WCR) as a joint charitable enterprise which took over the management of Stockton and Wellesbourne recycling centres from the county council in April 2012.

As well as providing a capital injection of £52,000 to supply and install pre-fabricated reuse shops, Warwickshire County Council supported the fledgling venture with an interest-free, 18-month pump-prime loan of £40,000. WCR provides the staff to operate the on-site shops, assist members of the public and ensure recycling is sorted.

In return, the organisation receives the recycling income to cover the costs of operating the sites with surpluses being donated to local charities through the Heart of England Community Foundation.

The judges said: “This was a stand out winner. This is a really impressive partnership, which is a new model delivering a solution in a tough economic climate.”


  • Alupro for MetalMatters
  • Coca-Cola Enterprises
  • DHL Envirosolutions
  • Keep Britain Tidy
  • Recyclebank
  • Shropshire Council
  • Sue Ryder
  • The Co-operative Group and Biffa

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