Guidance on High Density Housing and Flats Collections

Collecting from high density housing and flats presents a number of challenges for local authorities and MRF operators to overcome.

What is WRAP doing?

Over the past 10 years WRAP has undertaken extensive independent research with a number of local authorities to address these challenges and increase the volume and value of collections from flats and high density housing.

During this time WRAP has provided resources, funding and support to assist an increase volume, quality and consistency of recycling collections, sorting processes and the provision of services for the sale of recovered materials.

What can my organisation do?

Organisations yet to realise all the economic and environmental benefits of collection from high density housing and flats can use WRAP’s reports, guides, tools and case studies to create further value from their collection scheme.

Using the resources below, you can find out how to optimise the collections process, the best ways to communicate your collection campaign and what you can do to increase collection rates in your local authority:

Prevent household waste

WRAP’s Household Waste Prevention Hub provides local authorities with a comprehensive online resource to enable them to produce a Waste Prevention plan and to help householders prevent waste.

The hub contains guidance, links to templates and on-line tools to help waste and recycling officers make a more effective recycling plan and increase rates of collection in their local area.

Visit the Household Waste Prevention Hub >>

Collecting from flats and high density housing

Traditionally, recycling and food waste collection schemes have been rolled out to flats as a blanket service. However, collections from blocks of flats vary considerably; from the refuse disposal methods used to the communication opportunities available, meaning that a single type of scheme is unlikely to provide the most effective recycling solution for all blocks of flats.

WRAP’s guidance on collecting from flats has been developed to enable local authorities to negotiate differences in collection method and increase collection rates in areas with high density housing or flats through strategic planning, effective communication and active implementation.

Visit our Recycling Collections for Flats collection >>

Household food waste collections guide

Food waste collection is one of the most challenging aspects of safely and effectively recycling from blocks of flats or high density housing areas. As with other recycling systems used in flats, local authorities often use one blanket system for recycling, which often isn’t 100% effective in flats or high density housing areas.

WRAP’s guide Household Food Waste Collection focusses on food waste collection using a number of different recycling systems in varying areas. In particular, the section on food waste for flats focusses on the approach adopted by 13 local authorities, including six London boroughs, in order to provide guidance on how to manage or introduce a food waste collection service for flats.

Visit to Household Food Waste Collections: Collection from flats >>
Read the introduction to the guide >>

Waste recycling apportionment

The WRAP commercial and household waste/recycling ‘apportionment tool’ assists local authorities to calculate the proportion of waste and recycling when it is co-collected on the same vehicle. It also aims to:

  • provide consistency in the approach used by local authorities to apportion tonnages
  • improve the accuracy of data
  • assist with budgeting and service development

Download the waste recycling apportionment tool >>

Making more consistent collections

WRAP is working with government, local authorities and local communities to bring greater consistency to household waste and recycling collections in England and in turn increase recycling rates across the country.

Make your processes more efficient and consistent by joining WRAP and taking action today:         

WRAP’s Collections Consistency Project >>

Where next?

Want to know more about High Density Housing and Flats Collections in Collections and Sorting? Take a look at our reports, guides, tools and case studies for further information:

Reports >>
Guides >>
Tools >>
Case studies >>