DIY waste

Charges were introduced on 1 April 2018 for all DIY type construction and demolition waste. You can now dispose of your DIY waste at all of our recycling centres using the Pay as you Throw scheme.  

You can still dispose of all household waste free of charge at any of our 20 recycling centres.  This includes freestanding furniture, electricals and white goods. It’s DIY type construction and demolition waste that is charged.

We’ve answered some frequently asked questions below and you can read our press release about this change in policy.

DIY waste guide prices

The following DIY waste can be disposed of at all of our 20 recycling centres, with the exception of plasterboard.  This is not a complete list.

Plasterboard - £9 (£15 at Mile Cross)

  • Plasterboard and plaster

Cost is per item or per 80 litre bag or equivalent.  Plasterboard is only accepted at Caister, Dereham, Hempton, Ketteringham, Mayton Wood, Mile Cross and Thetford.

Rubble - £3 - including:

  • Floor and wall tiles
  • Sinks, toilets and shower trays (ceramic)
  • Bricks, concrete and concrete posts
  • Paving slabs and stones

Cost is per item or per 80 litre bag or equivalent.

Timber - £3 - including:

  • Fitted kitchen units
  • Fitted and built in furniture
  • Doors, door frames and skirting
  • Laminate flooring and floorboards
  • Fence panels 
  • Wooden garden structures (sheds, walk-in pet runs, gazebos or other garden structures)
  • Decking, fencing, trellises, pergolas, arches and timber used for landscaping projects such as railway sleepers
  • Chipboard
  • Wood chipping
  • Pallets - except blue pallets, which cannot be accepted and should be returned to the supplier

Cost is per item or per 80 litre bag or equivalent.

Non-recyclable - £5 - including:

  • Insulation and roof felt
  • Plastic guttering, drains and facia
  • Baths and shower trays (plastic/acrylic)
  • Soil and turf
  • Pond liners and garden membranes
  • Doors, window and frames (UVPC)
  • Walk in structures (not wood or metal)
  • Oil tanks (plastic)

Cost is per item or per 80 litre bag or equivalent.

Flat glass - £5 - including:

  • Windows and glass doors
  • Greenhouse and conservatory glass
  • Shower screens

Cost is per item or per 80 litre bag or equivalent.

Metals – no restrictions or charges

Unsorted or mixed materials will also incur the £5 charge, so keep your recyclable DIY items separate.  Single items charges only apply to recognisable smaller items, such as a sink or fence panel. Larger, dismantled or chopped up items are charged by multiples of 80 litres.

Decisions made by our advisors about DIY waste are final.

We are unable to provide a refund after you have paid and deposited your DIY waste. 

At the recycling centre

When you arrive speak to one of our advisors who’ll assess your load and give you a price.  They’ll take your payment before you unload your waste.

Mile Cross recycling centre only takes payment by card - no cash is accepted on site.

For all our other recycling centres: for amounts under £10, you may pay by cash or card.  For amounts over £10, payment is by card only - no cash accepted.

You’ll pay less if you separate your waste – the charge for separated materials is lower than mixed loads which are classed as non-recyclable.

Our advisors may ask to inspect any materials you want to dispose of in the non-recyclable bins.  This helps us maintain our high levels of recycling and so we can refuse any hazardous waste.

Answers to frequently asked questions

The charges are the same across all our recycling centres with the exception of plasterboard at Mile Cross which is charged at the higher rate of £15.

We’re only charging for DIY type waste. All household waste is accepted free of charge as normal.

As a general rule, non-household or DIY waste items are materials created from the construction, demolition, alteration or repair of a home or garden. Materials may include a sink, bath, kitchen unit, radiator, fence panel, guttering, or rubble.

It doesn't include asbestos or paint/thinners which are classed as hazardous waste.

We only accept paint on our annual hazardous waste days but if you thoroughly dry out the unwanted paint you can put it in your rubbish bin (not your recycling bin) for collection. More information about disposing of paint.

We don’t accept asbestos at any of our recycling centres, even during our hazardous waste events. More information about asbestos removal and disposal.

Fly-tipping is the illegal dumping of waste. Fly-tipping is a crime that should be reported to your local district, city or borough council.

The majority of fly-tipping is of items that would have been accepted free of charge at our recycling centres anyway, such as sofas, white goods and other electrical items and garden waste. We’ll continue to accept this waste for free.

Previous changes to our recycling centre service, such as making sites part time, have not shown an increase in illegal dumping of waste. Other councils who have introduced a similar charge for DIY type waste have not seen a significant increase in fly-tipping.

Norfolk data from incidents on public land shows that only around 4.1% of incidents of illegally dumped waste relate to construction or demolition waste.

Under current government legislation DIY waste is classed as ‘construction and demolition’ waste and falls under the category of ‘industrial’ waste.

By law, councils do not have to accept industrial waste at their recycling centres.

The current legislation we abide by includes:

  • The Environmental Protection Act 1990, Part 2, section 51 which requires the County Council to provide residents with sites for the disposal of household waste
  • The Local Authority Charging Order 2015 which prohibits charging residents for the disposal of household waste or for entering or exiting recycling centres
  • Controlled Waste Regulations 2012, Schedule 1, Part 3 classes construction and demolition waste (or DIY waste as we call it) as industrial waste, and not household waste, and therefore we can make a charge for it

Your council tax goes towards the operation of household waste recycling centres. DIY type waste is not household waste and is not included in your council tax.

We used to be able to absorb a small amount of DIY waste from customers but this is no longer possible due to the high cost of disposal of this material.

Charging for DIY waste ensures that your council tax payment goes towards paying for essential services.

The amount of funding the County Council receives from central government is reducing significantly so we have to look at ways to deliver services in a more cost effective way.

This means we have to make difficult decisions so that we stay within our budget while still providing essential public services.

Any resident taking on a normal DIY project can use the recycling centres.

For larger projects producing more DIY waste, other options include hiring a skip or employing a licenced waste carrier.

Visit the Recycle for Norfolk website for more options to dispose of your DIY waste.

Make sure you factor in the cost of disposing of DIY waste when planning your latest DIY project.

If you employ a trader to dispose of waste, you need to be aware of your householder duty of care.

Under the Waste (Household Waste) Duty of Care (England and Wales) Regulations 2005, householders must take reasonable measures to ensure that waste produced on their property is passed on to an authorised person.

If you are a householder, it is your responsibility to check that any trader removing waste from your property is a registered waste carrier.

You can check on the Environment Agency website.

Rogue waste operators will charge people for waste disposal but won’t pay to use the commercial waste sites that they are supposed to use.

If their fly-tipped waste is traced back to a particular household, the householder could be fined.

You can dispose of commercial waste for a charge at Thetford, King’s Lynn, Dereham, Ketteringham, Mayton Wood, Hempton and Caister recycling centres.

We’re running this service on a trial basis at the moment.

Read more about disposing of business waste.

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