Recycle for Lewisham

A blog written for residents of Lewisham


A rubbish diet that we can guarantee will work!

With Summer on its way, many of us consider going on a diet, shedding a few pounds to feel healthier or to try and fit into last years swim suit. This year, Lewisham’s recycling team thought it might be an idea to try out a diet with a difference. We have set a challenge to Deptford based childminder, Charlotte Kelly- Skinner, to try out a ‘rubbish diet’- on her wheelie bin!

Over the next eight weeks, Charlotte will see if she can reduce the amount of rubbish she places into her grey domestic refuse bin. Inspired by colleagues in St Edmundsbury Borough Council, Suffolk, where a number of residents have been starving their rubbish bins and helping decrease the overall amount the council sends to landfill (in Lewisham’s case, incineration).

Charlotte Kelly- Skinner, Deptford based childminder pictured with Kate Parkinson from Lewisham's Recycling team.

Charlotte Kelly- Skinner (right), Deptford based childminder being ably assisted by one of Lewisham Council’s Waste Prevention Officers 

So what does a ‘rubbish diet’ entail? Well, really very little effort is needed. Unlike other diets, you won’t have to change your eating habits. Just look at our top five tips listed below and if you start trying these out, you too can join in and slim down your bin so its in tip top shape for summer!

Top five tips to slim your bin

  • If you have an outside space, get yourself a compost bin and start composting! You can place your uncooked food waste in these as well as garden clippings, paper waste etc. Lewisham Council provides one free compost bin to each household so go on line for all information about compost bins at or contact our call centre on 020 8314 7171 to get your hands on one
  • Shop with waste in mind– Start to plan meals, making a list of the ingredients needed and stick to this when shopping. Always take your own bag and try and buy fruit and vegetables which are unpackaged.
  • Think about your food waste– Try not to cook more than you need by measuring quantities before cooking. If you do have leftovers, cool, cover and save them in the fridge or freezer. See for more info.
  • Ditch the disposable– Could you do without buying cling film and silver foil? If you use disposable nappies for your little ones, consider cloth nappies even if you just buy a reusable nappy for trips to the swimming pool, this will help to reduce the waste you produce.
  • Recycle, recycle, recycle- if you have done all of the above, most things left over can go into the recycling bin. For a full list of the things which can be recycled in Lewisham, please visit:

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Come and have a go at the £ood Waste Challenge

Recycle for London are recruiting people for their £ood Waste Challenge taking place from 17th – 30th November 2012. The £ood Waste Challenge is a two week challenge getting Londoners to see how much food they throw away in a normal week, then giving them tips and information on how to reduce that. The challenge would be for participants to reduce their food waste by the greatest amount over a one week period.

Sign up or pledge to reduce your food waste.

 What we want people to do:

  • Sign up/pledge to reduce their food waste
  • Commit to make a note/diary over two weeks of what food and drink they throw away at home (ideally as a household, but can be as an individual if in shared house, student halls etc)
  • Weigh the total amount of food and drink thrown away in weeks 1 and 2 (Recycle for London will provide tools to help if necessary)
  • If they can, do some sort of communications (Facebook posts, blog, photo blog, video diary, tweets, article in newspaper etc) to tell people what they are doing and how it’s going

 Go to event at City Hall on Friday 23rd November to:

  • meet other participants
  • share results
  • share experiences, thoughts on what they threw away most, hardest to avoid, top tips, recipes etc
  • learn more about food waste and how to save money at home
  • get toolkit and learn tips to reduce food waste
  • Share ideas on how other people can reduce their food waste and save money
  • Let them know if happy to participate in any PR (eg media interviews etc)

If you’d like to find out more about the Challenge simply visit the Recycle for London website to register your interest and the team will get in touch with more information: