BRADFORD residents have been urged to sell unwanted items online, or take them to charity shops, in a bid to reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill.

A spike in the amount of waste being thrown out during lockdown is costing the Bradford taxpayer an extra £50,000 a week - it has been revealed.

According to figures from Bradford Council, the amount of waste collected by the authority has gone up by an average of 500 tonnes a week.

And contamination of recycling bins has also risen to a record high during lockdown - with 40 per cent of bins being contaminated by non-recyclable waste.

Councils across the country have to pay a "landfill tax" - an extra charge inposed by the Government for each tonne of waste that is sent to landfill rather than being recycled.

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The rate for "inactive waste," non-construction material, was increased to £94.15 per tonne in April.

Bradford Council says the higher levels of waste being collected is costing the Council an extra £50,000 a week.

The authority yesterday put out a statement urging residents to try and cut down on the waste they leave to be collected.

They have been asked to consider taking items to charity shops, furniture recycling warehouses or to "post them on internet sites such as Freecycle or Gumtree."

The Council said: "Recycling tonnages have also increased by approximately 100 tonnes per week but the grey recycling bins are now more likely than ever to be contaminated with non recyclable materials. Recycling contamination is now at an all-time high of 40 per cent. This incurs an additional cost of at least £10,000 per week to process and clean the recyclable material and dispose of the contamination.

"By re-using and recycling materials and equipment everyone can save money, reduce waste, help the environment and create a better place to live.

"Good quality unwanted items can also be taken to a local charity shop or furniture recycling project which are starting to open again. You can also post them on internet sites such as Freecycle or Gumtree."

Councillor Sarah Ferriby, Executive Member for Healthy People and Places, said: "Lots of people have been taking advantage of being at home more during the lockdown and having a ‘Covid clean out’ of cupboards, lofts and garages. This has lead to the huge increase in waste being collected at the kerbside.

“I urge everyone to think about what waste they produce and what they do with that waste – why not pass the good stuff on to friends, relatives or neighbours to re-use? Then recycle as much as you possibly can, putting the right things in the right bins.

"We all need to play our part because looking after the environment, helping to keep the places we live and work in clean and safe, reducing waste, increasing recycling and getting involved in the community are all the right things to do.

"We need to reduce the waste we put in our green bins and increase re-use and recycling.”

You can check what goes in what bin by visiting