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Local Authority Innovation: Oxfordshire County Council

Oxfordshire County Council’s (OCC) waste management team partnered with the council’s Early Intervention Service; a countywide service targeted at vulnerable children, young people and families. In Banbury, the largest town in the county, the Early Intervention Service operates from the New Futures Hub, where the ‘Re-Cycle’ project is run.

Workers from the New Futures Hub collect bikes from the local Household Waste Recycling Centre for use on the Re-Cycle project, enabling young people to learn how to completely strip a bicycle down, repair components and re-build the bicycle to a roadworthy standard for their own use afterwards.

The project has been shown to empower vulnerable members of the community and engage them in a positive activity, helping grow their self-confidence as well as offering them the chance to gain a practical skill.

One of the key successes of the project is the way it has brought together OCC Waste Management Officers, Hub workers, contractor staff at the HWRC and OCC HR staff who help to develop apprenticeships across the county. This has helped divert nearly two tonnes or 120 bicycles from recycling to reuse. An apprenticeship scheme is now being set up as have similar schemes across the county.

The judges said: “This is a local authority that is putting the circular economy in plain English, bringing it to life and shifting the mindset.”

Cheshire West and Chester Council – Highly commended

Cheshire West and Chester Council introduced the first kerbside nappy and incontinence product recycling scheme in England. The free opt-in Nappycycle scheme gives residents a weekly collection of the last smelly fraction of their waste. The service has helped alleviate residual waste capacity issues, and positively contribute towards enhancing recycling performance, collecting around 322kg of absorbent hygiene products per household each year. The participation rate for the Nappycycle service averages 93%, valuably inputting towards the overall recycling rate for Cheshire West and Chester, which is set to jump from 56% to over 61% in 2013/14. Alongside this, the residual waste tonnage per head will have dropped to below 430kg/yr.


  • Brighton & Hove City Council
  • Cheshire East and Cheshire West & Chester Council
  • Dudley MBC
  • London Borough of Lewisham
  • Merseyside Recycling and Waste Authority
  • Rhondda Cynon Taff Council
  • Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council
  • TOR2 in partnership with Bywaters

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