Planning your recycling centre visit in Bristol

Cars line up to next to the bays to recycle household items at the recycling centre

Visiting a Bristol recycling centre? Here's what you need to know

Are you planning a visit to one of Bristol’s three household reuse and recycling centres?

You might know it as ‘the tip’ or even *shudder* ‘the dump’, but in Bristol they prefer to be called household reuse and recycling centres (or recycling centres, for short).

This is because it’s not just about getting rid of stuff safely and legally, although that is a big part of it. It’s about reusing and recycling all those valuable resources that make up household waste.

From aerosols and asbestos to zinc and ‘zines, you can recycle lots of materials at our recycling centres.

It helps to plan your visit ahead of time. Help Bristol waste nothing and ensure you’re recycling as much as you can by reading on…

Signs at the Avonmouth recycling centre.

We’ve put together the ultimate list of the top 12 things you need to know before you visit a Bristol recycling centre.

12. You can check online to see which is your nearest recycling centre

There are three options of recycling centres Bristol. Our oldest site is in St Philips and is perfect if you’re in East or Central Bristol. Then, up North, we have our Avonmouth site and thirdly, the newest of the three, is our South Bristol based Hartcliffe Way recycling centre.

Which is your closest recycling centre? Check here

11. You need to book before your visit

Go to the online form to book your recycling centre time slot. Booking online means not having to wait in queues and always having enough helpful staff on site.

Book online or over the phone to check your nearest site and book your slot here.

People without access to the internet can call 0117 922 2100 Monday to Friday between 8.30am to 6pm (closed midday to 1.30pm on Wednesday).

10. It’s best to sort all recyclables before you arrive

Bringing multiple items to the recycling centre? Sort everything by material type as you load up your car or bike trailer. This will mean unloading into the correct bay is super easy and no recyclable items go to waste!

9. You can recycle loads of different materials at our sites

At Bristol recycling centre, we have recycling bays for most common household waste items and lots of less common ones too.

If you’re in doubt, you can check online ahead of your visit or ask one of our helpful staff members when you arrive.

8. You can visit all of our recycling centres by bike and you can also visit Hartcliffe Way on foot

No car? No problem. You can visit all three of Bristol’s recycling centres by bike and our Hartcliffe Way site can also be accessed by pedestrians.

This is a great way to reduce the carbon impact of your Bristol recycling centre visit and you can get your steps in.

7. Children need to remain in vehicles at all times

As working sites, our recycling centres can be full of moving vehicles and potential hazards. It’s important that you are aware of your surroundings and that children remain inside vehicles throughout your visit.

6. During the student move-out period students can use a Bristol recycling centre without booking

Reduce the environmental impact of the end-of-term moving-out season. As part of our Students On The Move campaign, Bristol students can visit our recycling centres without prior booking. Find out more about the campaign here.

5. Our staff are always on hand to answer questions about what can be recycled where

Ask the experts. When it comes to reducing waste, we know what we’re talking about. If you’re in doubt about how an item can be recycled (or whether it’s good enough to be donated to our Reuse Shop) just ask one of our team. You can spot them in hi-vis around our sites.

4. Yes, you’ve heard correctly, our recycling centre staff really are that lovely (proof from Joe Sims, Google reviews!)

You might have heard BBC Radio Bristol’s Joe Sims singing the team’s praises. Or maybe you’ve seen the Google reviews sighting friendly and helpful colleagues.

Come and see them for yourself! If the team are busy with other questions, we will get to you as soon as we can.

3. Bringing black bagged general waste? You may be asked to check through for recyclables when you arrive

Our helpful crews will be on site at each of our recycling centres, helping residents go through their black “general waste” bags and checking what items can be saved for recycling.

Help Bristol waste nothing and sort all reusable and recyclable items before you arrive.

2. You can also donate clean, usable items to our Reuse Shops

Getting rid of clean, usable items like furniture, garden tools (not petrol powered or containing chemicals) and electricals? You can donate them to be reused via our Reuse Shops.

There is a donation point at each recycling centre and you can also make donations directly to the shops during opening hours.

Please be aware, all donations of soft furnishings need a valid fire safety label, and our Hartcliffe Way Reuse Shop does not accept household bric-a-brac or children’s toys.

1. You can visit a Reuse Shop during your visit

Pick up a pre-loved bargain from our Reuse Shops, located at the recycling centres. Check the website for opening hours.

Visit the Reuse Shops for:

  • Furniture of all shapes and sizes
  • DIY equipment including tools and paint
  • Homeware such as mirrors and picture frames
  • Gardening items like tools and plant pots
  • Fully services electricals, from desk fans and vacuum cleaners to laptops and games consoles
  • And much more!


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