Clean-up operation in full swing for student changeover

Caption: Councillor Mark Dobson (left) and Frankie O'Byrne, Leeds University Union community officer survey the pile of rubbish collected in one day as students pack up their digs. 

Caption: The rubbish was piled up to demonstrate the scale of the operation Leeds City Council has to mount to keep streets rubbish-free during student changeover.

Extra bin and rubbish collections are underway in parts of Leeds as thousands of students prepare to leave the city at the end of term.

Alongside the daily pick-ups of wheeled bins in Headingley, Hyde Park, Woodhouse, Kirkstall and Weetwood, the council is also deploying additional resources to clear discarded furniture, clothes and other household items cluttering the streets; the extra bin wagons, cleansing vehicles and crews to make this happen have been part-funded by the council’s inner north west area committee.

Additional environmental action officers will be patrolling the streets too.

The clean-up is being delivered in partnership with the University of Leeds. In a bid to prevent even more waste going to landfill, students from the university are knocking on doors to encourage people to donate their top quality, unwanted items to good causes as part of their Leave Leeds Tidy service.

Action days to collect books, CDs, bedding, clothes and gadgets have and continue to be held so students can drop off unwanted but reusable stuff.

Students are encouraged to reduce, re-use and recycle throughout the year, but the targeted collections and clean-up operations mark the end of term-time tenancies.

**********Media opportunity**********

What: All rubbish collected from one street in a single day will be piled up to show the extent of council operations to keep streets clean during changeover and the range of re-usable items thrown away. Councillor Mark Dobson and volunteers from University of Leeds will be available for interviews and photos.

Where: Kirkstall recycling site, Evanston Avenue, LS4 2HR

When: Tuesday 25 June, 3pm until 3.30pm.

Please confirm on 0113 395 1577 if you wish to attend so access to the site can be arranged.


In 2012, the council collected an extra 367 tonnes of waste as students packed up their digs. 121 tonnes of this waste was recycled with student volunteers ensuring a further 13.5 tonnes of items – including a 42 inch plasma HD TV – were donated to raise money for local charities instead of languishing in landfill.

Councillor Mark Dobson, executive member for the environment, said:

“Working with the council, the universities and student unions have been busy ensuring students know the best way to re-use or recycle anything they don’t want. However, we’re geared up to clean up so local residents aren’t inconvenienced.

“We’d prefer people to re-use or because we stand to gain financially and environmentally with less waste going to landfill.”

Environmental action officers are also doing extra patrols to put off any would-be fly tippers and bag slashers.

Notes to editors:

  • Key messages about reusing and recycling have been posted on social media sites and university portals. The council and university have created a short video which summarises what students and landlords should do with their waste during the change-over period: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=em662loYDdI

  • Action Days run by Leave Leeds Tidy are being run with Emmaus Leeds and St. Jude’s to collect unwanted pots and pans, bedding, crockery, clothes and electronics. These will take place between 11am and 3pm on Saturday 29 June (Walmsley Road and Ashville View), Sunday 30 June (Quarry Mount School and Graham Mount) and Monday 1 July (outside Hyde Park Picture House and on Headingley Mount).

  • Leave Leeds Tidy champions from Leeds University Union will be working in the area, offering advice, identifying grot spots and reporting any fly tipping incidents to the council’s environmental action officers.

  • For more information about the Leave Leeds Tidy project, please see www.leaveleedstidy.com

For media enquiries please contact:

Amanda Burns, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 395 1577

e-mail: amanda.l.burns@leeds.gov.uk