Wheelie Bin pilot


Header - Cleaner

Milton Keynes Council will be running a waste collection pilot on 5,800 homes to compare against the current clear sack system starting in June/July 2020.

This includes the use of wheelie bins and other waste solutions that could address the challenges faced by different estates.

The pilot will be run for six months in the following areas*:

Areas covered by the wheeled bin trial
Astwood Monkston
Bancroft Park Monkston Park
Blue Bridge Moulsoe
Brooklands New Bradwell
Chichley Newton Leys
Grange Farm North Crawley
Hardmead Oakgrove
Lakes Estate Oakhill
Little Crawley Shenley Church End

* Not all streets will form part of the pilot, but you can download a full list of Waste Pilot streets covered (PDF, 234KB)

The pilot will help MK Council develop options for a borough wide roll out in 2023 when the existing collection contract expires.


MK is one the top recyclers in the UK and was one of the first places in the country to introduce separate kerbside recycling collection in the 1990s.

In 1990 MK Council trialled red boxes for paper (i.e. ‘read’ papers – red for paper) and blue boxes for glass, cans and plastic bottles. It did so well that MK then became the first to build its own in-borough recycling plant.

Our current system includes black rubbish sacks for regular waste that can’t be recycled, clear sacks for recycling, a blue box for glass and a green bin for food and garden waste. Variations are in place for flats, communal and special kerbside properties.

Around 20% of the recycling we receive is contaminated so we want to make sure one of our priorities is to improve the quality of materials we collect.

The pilot is a similar system to MK’s former red and blue collection system from the 1990s and the following is proposed:

  • A grey wheeled bin collected weekly for residual waste
  • A wheeled bin with a red lid for paper and card
  • A wheeled bin with a blue lid for plastic, metals and glass
  • No change to the food and garden waste wheeled bin
  • No change to properties which currently receive a communal collection
FINAL - bins

Reasons why areas were chosen

These homes were chosen to cover a wide range of properties from Victorian terraces to newer homes, with gardens and outside spaces of various sizes including more rural areas too.   All properties in the borough are being surveyed by Keep Britain Tidy to check if they are suitable for wheelie bins.

Homes in the pilot area that cannot accommodate wheelie bins will be offered a tailored collection. The streets covered can be found in our Waste Pilot street list (PDF, 234KB).

Why wheeled bins?

Monitoring will be in place to see if using wheelie bins leads to cleaner streets. Current arrangements mean that sacks left on the street can burst, or be ripped open by animals. The use of wheelie bins in the pilot may also lead to increased recycling and less fly tipping.

Business waste misuse will be more straight forward to monitor within the pilot area. Reports have been received that commercial waste is being wrongly put out for collection alongside domestic waste.


How it will work?

Homes taking part in the pilot will be contacted before the pilot starts and will be provided with a detailed information pack. For background information please read the committee papers.

Information sessions

We will be out and about to answer your questions nearer the time of the pilot. Information on events can be found here and will be promoted through our media channels.

Need more assistance?

Further information can be found in our Frequently Asked Questions, or if you still have queries our email address is: recycling-pilot@milton-keynes.gov.uk or call us on 01908 252811

Last Updated: 23 June 2020