FAQs - reopening Household Recycling Centres


These Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) have been created to ensure the Household Recycling Centres (HRCs) are only being used to enable visits which are essential to prevent injury, illness or harm to residents who have a problem with storing too much waste or have oils or other hazardous waste at home and for whom these are important facilities.


Why are you opening the site?  Is it safe?

Following recent Government Guidance where HWRC provision is ranked as an essential service, we are opening most of the Birmingham recycling centres to help maintain the integrity of the whole waste collection and treatment network.  


We are following Government and industry guidance and have worked with Birmingham City Council to agree the best approach based on local conditions and within our duty of care.  Safety is Veolia’s first priority and all site users are expected to follow these rules:

  • Anyone in self-isolation or with COVID-19 symptoms must NOT visit under any circumstances
  • You should only visit sites if it is absolutely essential 
  • You must bring address documentation - council tax, utility bill, bank statement, insurance document, driving licence (to be displayed against closed car window)
  • The number of vehicles on-site will be restricted and cars should be driver-only where possible (only one adult to exit vehicle)
  • Social distancing at 2m will be strictly enforced 
  • Operatives CANNOT assist the public due to social distancing
  • Only ONE person will be allowed on a gantry at a time.
  • No walk-ons permitted access


Can I bring my waste in a van or trailer?

Yes. Small trailers (up to 6'x4') can be booked using the online booking system. Larger trailers (larger than 6'x4') and vans need to be booked via the van booking centre.


What will happen when I visit a site?

Each site has its own set of guidelines. Posters will be displayed explaining what these are.  On site, there will be Recycling Assistants/Operatives to help manage the traffic.  They will advise you when to enter the site and, provided social distancing is possible, and guide you.  Please pay attention to container labels and only put your waste in the correct container.  Please do not use containers that have a barrier to the gantry.


What do you class as essential use?

Those visits which are essential to prevent injury, illness or harm to residents who have a problem with storing too much waste or have oils or other hazardous waste at home.


Why can’t you open for everyone to use?

We appreciate that it is unsightly to keep waste not collected at the kerbside, at home.  But the COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented and we must all work together to concentrate on beating the virus. The Government advice remains that the public should only leave their homes for an essential purpose. This is to ensure that the risk of spreading the infection is as limited as much as possible. Therefore, our sites are only open for essential visits, which are defined above. We are keeping up to date with Government guidance and will return to normal operations as soon as it is safe to do so.


I need someone to help unload my vehicle.  What do I do?

Social distancing at 2m will be strictly enforced and operatives CANNOT assist the public at this time.  Only one person will be allowed on the gantry at a time - understand that an additional person can only get out of the car to help unload heavy items when instructed to do so by onsite staffPerhaps your bulkier waste could be broken up at home into more manageable pieces.  Otherwise, Birmingham City Council has reopened bookings for bulky waste collection service at the kerbside. 


Which sites are open, and what can I take there?

All five Birmingham HRCs are now open.

  • Lifford Lane, Kings Norton, B30 3JJ
  • Holford Drive, Perry Barr, B42 2TU
  • Norris Way, Sutton Coldfield, B75 7BB
  • James Road, Tyseley, B11 2BA
  • Tameside Drive, Castle Bromwich, B35 7AG

We are able to recycle/re-use the following items:
Green garden waste, Cardboard, Paper, Glass, Metal, Wood and wood-based products (MDF, chipboard etc), Engine Oil, Car Batteries, Fridges & Freezers, Textiles, Shoes, TVs & CRT Monitors, Fluorescent tubes, Gas bottles, Soil, Hardcore & Rubble.


How long will it take to complete my visit?

The site is operating under a one in one out system for those who have booked in advance. On average, it takes 10 minutes from entering the site to leaving. Please be assured staff are working hard in difficult conditions to get you through as quickly and safely as they can. Please also ensure you arrive at the time specified in your booking, as arriving too early or late may cause delays for you and/or other users and may lead to access being denied to the site.


My waste is normally recycled but has gone into a mixed / general waste bin.  Will it go to landfill?

The site is open for essential use only.  It is operating under difficult circumstances and our priority is to allow essential users the opportunity to dispose of their waste safely.  When waste is identified as highly contaminated due to storage conditions, we may advise you to dispose of this waste in a non-recyclable container. To limit the impact on landfill, as always, we seek to recover this waste to energy through the energy recovery facility at Tyseley. This is why we must ask you to ensure you only visit the site unless absolutely necessary.  

Will you accept waste from my business?

Birmingham’s household recycling centres cannot legally accept business or trade waste.  You are advised to check with a local registered waste carrier or licensed disposal site.


My visit isn’t essential.  When will the sites open without the COVID-19 restrictions?

We are keeping up to date with Government guidance and as soon as it is safe to do so we will confirm back-to-normal arrangements.  Please check the website, local press or social media for updates.  

Thank you for your understanding and patience.


I've booked my slot but didn't receive a confirmation via email. Where is my confirmation?

Make sure to have checked junk/spam folders too as it may have ended up in there. If the confirmation isn't in there, the email provided may be inactive or have been misspelt. Another reason may be because the booking request wasn't fully completed to the end - the form will provide all the details you've entered and ask if they are correct (at this point, it is possible to go back and make amends) before you click the 'submit' button to confirm the booking.


Who can make a booking?

Only Birmingham City residents (who pay their council tax to Birmingham City Council) can make a booking. Proof of address (digital or hard copy) will be required when visiting the HRCs.


What if I don't have internet access to make a booking to visit the HRCs?

If you don't have access to the internet, you may ask someone else to make the online booking on your behalf.


There isn't a slot available at my usual HRC, what can I do?

All Birmingham residents have access to the city's network of HRCs and aren't restricted to visit just one to them. If a slot isn't available at your usual site, you have the option of picking another site to visit.


Can I bring my household waste in a van or trailer?

Small trailers 6x4ft and smaller can be booked in using the online booking system. Vans and large trailers (larger than (6x4ft) will need to be booked via the Van Booking Centre on 0203 567 3915.



How do I cancel my household recycling centre booking?

If you can no longer make your appointment, a cancellation can be made by clicking the link in the confirmation email you were sent after making the booking. Don't forget to check junk and spam folders if you can't find the email in your inbox.