This guide provides an overview of the steps required to procure a good practice bulky waste service that maximises re-use.

  • How can local authority services incorporate re-use bulky collections
  • Drivers for re-use through bulky waste collections
  • Considerations and options
  • Operating a re-use system and evaluating impact



This guide will enable local authorities to identify improvements they can make to their bulky waste contracts by introducing re-use and recycling services that will divert more waste from landfill and realise socio-economic benefits.  It aims to take the reader step-by-step through the process of introducing a re-use focused bulky collection service. 

Defining service aims and objectives

Having a clear set of aims and objectives for the bulky waste service, with provisions for enhancing re-use are important. They can help to:

  • give your departmental staff a focus for change;
  • encourage action by demonstrating a real commitment to increasing the quantity of waste that is re-used;
  • gain committee approval or departmental priority for the newly designed bulky service, and
  • to inform the communications messages to the public on marketing campaigns .

Identifying service options for re-use

Once your authority has made the decision to implement a bulky waste service which optimises re-use, the next step is to decide on the range of service options that would be most appropriate within your authority area.

To make this decision you must also consider the current strength of the relationship with the re-use sector and whether the existing bulky waste contractor/contract can be changed. The level of change required is also directly linked to your new aims and objectives.

Stakeholder engagement

Engaging with key local re-use stakeholders early on in the process of planning the new bulky waste service helps to set the foundations for a robust, long term service that has significant social, environmental and financial benefits.

Stakeholders are persons, groups or organisations that have a direct or indirect stake in a re-use scheme because it can affect or be affected by their actions, objectives or policies.

Partnering with waste management companies

Creating a long-term working relationship with the incumbant waste contractor or direct service organisation that makes provisions for maximising re-use, can be valuable but requires a pragmatic approach.

The Procurement Process - enhancing social value

When tendering for a bulky collection service which maximises the potential for re-use, some consideration should be given to the procurement process to ensure that there are not conditions which will ultimately restrict the number, range and quality of tenders received.

There are some checks which you can do which avoid restricting certain organisations such as re-use organisations from the process.

Calculating and comparing costs for bulky waste collection schemes

This section looks at the question of how much a bulky collection service costs to run, the impact of charging for collections and the impact of diverting a proportion of bulky collections to an alternative re-use collection service. 

Write a contract service contract with a service specification

The new bulky waste re-use service should not be a loose partnership of organisations and informal agreements but rather a formal commitment for the service providers to perform towards targets. A formal service agreement should be put in place to commit the provider to a minimum level of service and bind them to the achievement of the targets.

Managing the implementation of a new service and overcome barriers

The guide includes an implementation check-list which supplements a featured action plan.  This list will help steer the stakeholders through the implementation process and help identify the potential barriers and obstacles as they arise.  It helps provide a sense of step by step achievements along the way.  While some aspects might suffer inevitable delays, there will be some actions that can take place simultaneously. 



Re-use and recycling