The East Riding of Yorkshire Council leader’s column with Richard Burton

East Riding of Yorkshire Council leader, Councillor Richard Burton
East Riding of Yorkshire Council leader, Councillor Richard Burton

Thanks to the commitment of our residents, the East Riding has been crowned as England’s top recycler for the past two years.

While this is a fantastic achievement, we are not complacent as a council and a new campaign was recently launched to encourage our residents to recycle more metal packaging in their blue bins – following a successful trial held last year.

The council’s waste and recycling team launched the MetalMatters campaign in Bridlington.

The aim of the scheme is to encourage residents to place the following metal packaging items in their blue bins so they can be recycled:

○ food tins

○ drink cans

○ foil trays

○ foil – just scrunch into a ball

○ empty aerosols

○ metal screw tops – from glass bottles and jars

○ biscuit and sweet tins … please make sure all items are empty and clean.

For the project, the council has joined forces with MetalMatters, a national, industry-funded communications campaign.

Last year around 40,000 residents in the Pocklington, Market Weighton, Goole and Howden areas took part in a successful trial of the MetalMatters programme.

Their support of the campaign led to a 22-tonne increase in metal packaging collected in blue bins in that area in the first six months following its launch in October 2018. That’s the equivalent of almost 1.5 million empty drink cans!

The amount of aluminium alone placed in blue bins in the trail area increased from 43 tonnes to 62 tonnes – that’s an increase of 44%.

Thanks to the success of that trial, the MetalMatters campaign has now been rolled out across the East Riding.

If we replicate the success of last year’s trial across the whole of the East Riding, residents could help us recycle an extra 160 tonnes of metal packaging per year – that’s the equivalent of more than 10 million empty drink cans, which would be amazing.

Metals are endlessly recyclable.

Used metal packaging can be recycled into new products at a far lower cost to the environment than making them from raw materials.

Making cans from recycled material saves up to 95% of the energy, and greenhouse gas emissions, needed to make both aluminium and steel from scratch.

By simply recycling all metal packaging used in homes across the East Riding each year residents could save around 4,900 tonnes of carbon dioxide – the equivalent of taking 1,000 cars off local streets for a year.

○ For more information on the MetalMatters campaign, visit

○ For more information on recycling, visit