Test Valley residents are soon to be able to recycle a lot more at home following anticipated changes to recycling in Hampshire.

Glass, thin plastics and cartons are expected to be recyclable from home in the future as the government’s Environment Bill goes through parliament, and aims to improve recycling across the country. At present, Hampshire’s recycling facilities cannot process items like thin plastics which are recyclable in many other local authorities.

A weekly food waste service is also expected to be introduced from 2023 onwards following discussions on Project Integra (PI), which looks at recycling across Hampshire.

Test Valley Borough Council (TVBC) leader, Councillor Phil North, said: “We have a clear ambition in our corporate plan to give our residents more opportunities to recycle. Since I became the council’s PI representative in 2019, I have been persistent in my lobbying of the county council to get on with upgrading their materials recycling facilities (MRFs), where the contents of our brown bins are taken for processing.

“Thankfully the Environment Bill is now helping in this quest. Although less than six per cent of waste here in Test Valley goes to landfill, we can always do more. Particularly to improve our recycling rate.

“With an ever greater focus on climate change it is vital that we do everything we can to help people to recycle more and I firmly believe that by making it easier and collecting more at the kerbside we will be able to drive up recycling rates.”

The Environment Bill currently in Parliament sets out a number of different items that must be collected by local authorities from all households and businesses, among other matters. This means that items such as yoghurt pots, plastic tubs and trays should become recyclable in Test Valley under the plans, as well as Tetra Pak-style cartons.

Environment portfolio holder, Cllr Alison Johnston, said: “This is absolutely fantastic news and a huge step forward for Test Valley, the county and country as a whole. It is incredibly confusing for residents when they can recycle certain types of material at the kerbside in some parts of the country but not others. And this means that messages on packaging can be incorrect, which further muddies the waters.

“It’s fair to say that, collectively, we will need to undertake a huge amount of work over the next couple of years to implement these changes, but we are keen and ready to crack on.”