GUEST COLUMN: Use autumn waste for compost, by Coun Jim Creamer

Carved pumpkins can be added to your compost heap.

Carved pumpkins can be added to your compost heap.

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As the nights draw in and we get closer to Hallowe’en, next spring might seem a scarily long way off - but now is the perfect time to gather garden waste such as autumn leaves, grass cuttings and leftovers from carved pumpkins to turn into compost, ready to help your garden look great next year.

And rather than making bonfires from garden waste which pollute the atmosphere, you can also take your green waste to your local recycling centre.

We recycle 163,000 tonnes of household waste each year in Nottinghamshire.

We’re working closely with colleagues across the county to improve recycling rates in local districts, starting with a new garden waste service next year.

There’s lots you can still do in the meantime though and by recycling at home, your garden will really reap the benefit.

So as well as left-over pumpkins and fallen leaves, it’s worth throwing in used tea bags, food scraps, paper napkins, cardboard and fruit and vegetable waste into your compost bin.

And there’s other ways to recycle this Hallowe’en.

When the little ghosts and goblins in your family go trick-or-treating make sure they take reusable bags or containers to collect their treats in.

And if you don’t want to add your pumpkin leftovers to the compost bin, then cooking up soup or roasted pumpkins seeds is a tasty alternative - there are plenty of recipes online.

There are many benefits to recycling, materials such as food tins and drink cans can be recycled over again with no loss of quality.

Recycling is taken to our materials recovery facility where the materials are sorted, separated and sent to be made into new products.

This saves money and reduces energy bills so it’s a win-win all round.

County recycling centres are open daily from 8am until 6pm until the end of October.

Then as the clocks go back, winter recycling centres open each day from 8am until 4pm until the end of February when opening hours change again.

And don’t forget Nottinghamshire residents now need to be registered to use any of the county’s 12 recycling centres.

It only takes a couple of minutes and already more than 110,000 residents are signed up.

Register at www.nottinghamshire.gov.uk/registertorecycle or call 0300 500 80 80.