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Waste and recycling strategy

Plans to reduce waste, and future changes to our recycling and rubbish service have been approved. 

We have been reviewing our recycling and rubbish collection services and developing a new waste strategy for the New Forest in line with the government's objectives.  

On this page

Update, 22 November 2023

In October, the government updated their plans for a simpler approach to waste nationally, which involves all local authorities collecting the same materials.

We have since been reviewing how the government's update affects plans to improve waste and recycling in the New Forest district. This includes changes to household waste and recycling collections which were published in our Waste and Recycling Strategy 2022-2027, approved in summer 2022 and due to come in from May 2025. 

We discussed an update to our plans for a new waste and recycling service at our Sustainability Overview and Scrutiny Panel meeting today (Wednesday 22 November).  

Read our news article to find out more about our proposed update.

Proposals will now go to our Cabinet meeting on 6 December at 10am.

The first phase of our service change is the introduction of a new wheeled bin garden waste collection service from April 2024. Sign up for garden waste collections from April 2024

Waste Strategy 2022-2027

Our new waste strategy details our plans to reduce waste, and changes to our recycling and rubbish service. 

Read the Waste Strategy 2022-2027:  

You can also view a web version of the Waste Strategy 2022-2027, without graphics.

Request a print version of the Waste Strategy 2022-2027 summary or full document by emailing  

The strategy provides more information on changes to our service, and the research, resident engagement, and objectives which has led to this point. We recommend reading the strategy for a full picture of our plans. 

Why we are changing our service

We will be doing more to reduce waste, and changing our service, so we can: 

  • meet the government's recycling rate target of 55% in 2025 and 65% in 2035
  • reduce waste in the district
  • recycle food waste, which currently makes up roughly 40% of our total collected general waste, by weight 
  • collect a wider range of recyclable materials, including more plastics 
  • offer the safest working conditions for our waste crews 
  • comply with the Environment Act
  • reduce litter from split plastic sacks, which can cause harm to wildlife

New core collection service, expected from 2025

Our core new service will be provided to the majority of our residents. 

The core new service will include: 

New food waste collections 

Food waste will be collected weekly for recycling.  

We will provide a 7 litre caddy which can be used in kitchens, and a 23 litre caddy for collections. 

Alternate week collections of mixed recycling and general waste  

Mixed recycling, and paper and card, will be collected one week. General waste will be collected the next.  

Mixed recycling will be added loose to an 180 litre wheeled bin.  

Mixed recycling will include:  

  • plastic bottles, pots, tubs and trays and film
  • metal tins and cans  
  • glass bottles and jars  
  • beverage cartons may also be collected as mixed recycling, subject to government requirements 

Paper and card will be collected in a 90 litre reusable bag. The bag will be waterproof and weighted.  

Items which cannot be recycled will be collected as general waste in an 180 litre wheelie bin. 

New collection policy  

For a new collection service, a new collection policy will be put in place.  

Read more about the new collection policy, agreed at 5 July Cabinet

The collection policy will define alternative arrangements for households whom the core service is not suitable for. It will also define containers sizes, our approach to side waste, assisted collections and allowances for larger households. 

We will:   

  • survey properties across the district to identify which will properties will need alternatives to wheelie bins
  • offer our assisted collection service to support residents who cannot move their containers on collection day
  • offer larger or smaller bins to residents who need more or less capacity for their waste

View the summary or section 8 of our new waste strategy for more information.

    How the waste strategy has been developed

    The development of our new waste strategy has been informed by:   

    • government consultations   
    • an initial resident survey, early 2020  
    • our Draft Waste Strategy, approved in November 2020  
    • a formal period of engagement, late 2020 where residents, our staff, and other stakeholders provided feedback on the Draft Waste Strategy  
    • Hampshire's new Joint Municipal Waste Management Strategy (JMWMS), which will see us working with councils in Hampshire to manage the county's waste. We approved the strategy in October 2021 
    • looking at best practice from top-performing councils from comparable areas in England. For example, when looking at other councils we need to consider factors such as how their recycling rate is measured, how many households are in the area, and how many tips are available nearby 
    • ongoing feedback from our community, members and staff 

    What will happen next  

    We will keep you updated and share more information and resources to support you with future changes to the service. 

    If you have any questions or would like to share your views, please contact our waste strategy team at

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