Frequently asked questions

How have waste and recycling collections changed?

The new 1-2-3+ collection service started on 4 June 2018 and is being delivered by Daventry Norse, a new joint venture between the Council and Norse Commercial Services Ltd.

Find out more information about the background to the 123+ service and the Daventry Norse joint venture.

The new service includes:

1 Weekly food waste collection 

2 Weekly recycling collection in new blue-lidded wheelie bin

3 Weekly general waste ‘black bin’ collection

+ An optional 2-weekly garden waste service for an annual fee of £36 a year

Find out more information about what can be put in each bin 

Why have they changed?

Increasing recycling: Three weekly rubbish collections help encourage more recycling and will reduce the money spent on treating and disposing of rubbish. A new fortnightly recycling collection from a wheeled bin collection offers more room for your recycling and it no longer has to be sorted. You will also be able to recycle large pieces of cardboard, without having to cut it up!  Recycling more of your waste will save energy, reduce costs and free up space in your rubbish bin.

Making savings: Daventry District could not afford to carry on with the previous waste and recycling collections, both environmentally and financially. If these changes had not been made the cost of the service would have risen by around £1.25m a year. This is because the prices paid for materials for recycling have dropped since the current contract was tendered in 2010. Now councils often have to pay to get these taken away, rather than being paid for them. The Council has been protected from this effect by its current contract. Prices of waste collection services have also increased tremendously from eight years ago when the current contract prices were agreed.

Frequently asked questions:

Scroll down to view a comprehensive list of FAQs about the service. Or click on the links below if you have questions about a particular aspect of the service:


Will my Council Tax be reduced, as I'm receiving fewer collections?
No, but the new service stops the waste collection element of the Council Tax from increasing in the future.

Has my collection day changed?
Yes - you should have received a new collection calendar with the details on it. Alternatively you can check your new collection day online

Did you consult on the changes to the waste and recycling collection service? 
Yes. A full consultation regarding the design of the service was carried out in February and March 2016. You can  find out more about the consultation here

Food waste

What types of food waste can be put into the caddy?
All leftover raw and cooked foods, including veg peelings, out of date food, plate scrapings, solid fats, meat and fish bones. Please do NOT put any liquids in the caddy.

I compost my fruit and vegetable peelings - should I stop?
No, please continue to use your compost bin. You can use the food waste collection service for other types of food waste that you can’t compost such as meat, fish and leftovers.

I don't want to use my food waste bin - do I have to?
No, but we hope that you will give it a go. It’s an important way to reduce the amount of waste going into your black bin.


What size are the food waste bins?
The small one has a capacity of 5 litres and the large one is 23 litres.

I do not have enough room in my food waste bin - can I have a second one? 
Yes - if you find you are regularly running out of room in your caddy please contact us to request a second one. 

What should I line my caddy with?
You can use compostable bags and plastic caddy liners that are available to buy at some supermarkets and online. 


Will the food in my caddy smell?
Not if you empty your food caddy regularly into the outside container. Your outdoor caddy has a lockable lid to contain smells and stop vermin getting in.

Where does the food waste go?
To an anaerobic digester that will turn the food waste into electricity and compost.

For hints and tips to help you reduce food waste, visit


What should I do with my old red and blue recycling boxes?
You will no longer be able to put out your recycling boxes for collection – this is due to the new way that recycling is collected by crews at the kerbside. The Council does not intend to collect your red and blue boxes. However once they have been washed out, the boxes have a range of different uses including storage in the garden, home, shed or garage – they can also make great raised flower beds and planters or could even be converted into composters.

Why has the Council changed recycling collections from weekly to fortnightly?
By replacing the smaller boxes with a larger wheelie bin which can take mixed recyclables, we hope this will encourage more people to recycle. The wheelie bin will also provide more space for recyclables over two weeks than the blue and red boxes collected weekly - 240 litres capacity wheelie bin compared to 200 litres capacity for the two boxes over two weeks of collections.

I didn't receive a blue-lidded recycling bin - what should I do?
Please email or phone us on 01327 871100 and we will arrange for one to be delivered. 

Can I still recycle the same things as before?
Yes, you will still be able to recycle the same things and you can also now add large cardboard, which previously had to be cut down into smaller pieces for your boxes. You also no longer need to sort your items first as all recycling can be placed into the wheelie bin together.

Why do you no longer collect batteries?

Batteries pose a fire risk to collection vehicles, especially those which use compaction. Further to a fire which seriously damaged one of our previous contactors vehicles, with a neighbouring authority suffering a similar incident, we took the decision to remove batteries from our list of materials that we can collect. The good news is that it’s very easy to recycle household batteries through retailers, as shops selling more than 32kg of batteries a year (approx. 345 x four-packs of AA batteries) have to provide battery recycling collection facilities in-store. Large batteries from laptops or automotive batteries can be recycled at Daventry or Brixworth Household Waste Recycling Centres.


Will you be taking all cardboard in the blue-lidded wheelie bin?
Yes - as long as the cardboard fits into the bin, we will take it for recycling.

I don't think I'll be able to fit all my recycling into the recycling bin - can I have a second bin? 
The new recycling bin provides 20 litres of extra capacity for recycling every week compared to the old box system. However, if you find you are consistently running out of room you can request a second recycling bin.

Won’t the recycling just be thrown away anyway?
No. There are laws and penalties that apply if we don’t recycle properly or enough. While occasionally things do go wrong, the vast majority of recycling collected does end up being recycled. You can help by making sure you check the list of what we can accept and recycle as much as you can. Your new recycling bin makes it easier for residents to recycle without having to separate items or cut up cardboard. 

What are the laws that affect recycling?
The main law is the Environmental Protection Act 1990, which requires the Council to provide a waste collection service (and requires Northamptonshire County Council to get rid of the black bin waste after we collect it). The Act also requires us to separately collect at least two types of recycling.

There is also the Waste Framework Directive from the European Union, applied in the UK by Regulations made by Government, which sets more ambitious recycling targets. These include a national target for the UK of 50% recycling, and a requirement for anyone collecting waste to separately collect paper, plastic, metal and glass for recycling. This target is set to increase to 65% before the UK leaves the EU.  

We can also be required under the Localism Act 2011 to share in any fine the UK Government has to pay if it fails to meet the 50% recycling target.

How do I recycle other items?
Lots of other waste items can be recycled, but not in the blue lidded wheeled bins. To recycle your old clothes, electrical items, good quality furniture items, white goods and engine oil, please take them to your nearest household waste recycling centre.  Check the Northamptonshire County Council Website - Household Waste Recycling Centre Page for details on your nearest waste recycling centre.

General waste

I fill my black bin in two weeks, so how will I cope with a three weekly collection?
We are improving the recycling service to make it easier for you to recycle more of your general waste. We are introducing a fortnightly wheelie bin collection for recycling, where you will be able to put all your items without having to sort them first. The wheelie bin offers more room for recyclables over a two-week period than the weekly recycling box collections. You can also now recycle large cardboard too.

We know that some of the waste that goes into black bins could still be recycled so we will be encouraging residents to look at ways to slim their bin – reduce, reuse, recycle.

Won’t a three-weekly collection be unhygienic and smelly?
Food waste, which can cause smelly bins, will still be collected every week – please put this in your brown caddy for collection. It can go inside compostable liners before you put it in your food waste bin. Other tips include:

  • If possible please keep your bin out of direct sunlight.
  • Items such as disposable nappies and animal waste should be double-bagged and tied tightly before putting in the black bin to minimise smell.
  • Rinse food packaging that can’t be recycled before you put it in the bin to help stop smells.
  • Wash your bin every now and again with washing up liquid and water to avoid a build-up of waste stuck to the inside.
  • Don’t overfill your bins and keep bin lids fully closed.

Advice on Maggots/Flies

Maggots are fly larvae, usually of the common housefly and also the bluebottle. Flies are attracted to food and other rubbish; they lay their eggs on the rubbish; later the eggs hatch into maggots. You will only have a problem with maggots if flies can get to your waste.

If flies settle on your rubbish they may lay eggs which can hatch out as maggots within 24 hours. (Therefore the frequency of refuse collections is irrelevant).

Householders are responsible for their own household waste and for the hygiene at their home; including their bins.

How can I reduce the risk of maggots?

  • The first step is to make sure that flies can’t get at your rubbish; in fact wheelie bins are much better at keeping flies out than black bin bags.
  • Put all food waste into your food waste bin which is collected weekly.
  • Fly spray can be effective at helping with flies, but these must be purchased by the householder.
  • Try to reduce the amount of food wasted (visit  
  • Never leave food uncovered inside the home – this includes cat/dog food – remember flies may lay eggs on exposed food and in warm weather the eggs can hatch within 24 hours
  • Rinse polystyrene food trays and other food packaging that can’t be recycled before you put it in the bin, this will also reduce bad odours
  • Squeeze out the air from bags and tie them tightly
  • Any food scraps, pet waste, nappies should be double wrapped
  • If possible leave the bin out of direct sunshine
  • Ensure the bin lid is closed
  • Hang insecticide strips inside your bin to help control flies
  • Try using Citronella – a natural remedy used in gardens. This will discourage flies as they don’t like the smell.
  • Remember, flies will also be attracted to recycling material if they aren’t clean – so please make sure all food cans, bottles and jars are rinsed
  • If disposable nappies are in your rubbish, empty ‘solids’ down the toilet
  • Ensure your kitchen bin has a close fitting lid – ‘swing top’ lids can let flies in.

What can I do about maggots in my bin?

  • Try using fly-spray
  • Pour over boiling water with a small amount of bleach
  • Most of the maggots will go when the bin is emptied. Once emptied the bin can be cleaned out with disinfectant or bleach and plenty of water. Use a cleaning product with a fragrance as this will help deter flies in the future.
  • If you do not want to wash out your bins - look in the local telephone directories/free papers for a professional bin cleaning company

Can maggots cause health problems?

Maggots are unpleasant but there is no evidence to suggest that they cause health problems. Flies are all around no matter what type of collection service is in operation. The best approach is to be careful with your waste and ensure that flies can’t get to it by following the advice above.

Won’t a three-weekly collection increase fly-tipping?
Evidence from other councils who have introduced a 3 weekly black bin collection indicates they have not experienced any significant increase in fly tipping as a direct result of the change.

Fly tipping is a result of the rising cost of waste disposal, meaning rogue traders are more inclined to dispose of their waste illegally. Fly tipping is an offence and we prosecute and fine people who do it. If you see flytipping in your area, please report it to us.

Why can’t I just put everything in the black bin?
If you put everything in the black bin you are likely to run out of space over 3 weeks and we will not collect extra bags left by the bin. You need to separate your waste into materials that can be recycled and that are collected separately.  

Recycling is important to protect the environment. We can put your waste materials to good use and we have a legal requirement to recycle as much household waste as we reasonably can. 

All the waste in the black bin costs Northamptonshire County Council (who have to dispose of waste we collect) to get rid of it. This would also increase your Council Tax further.

Each collection made also costs a lot of money. If we can reduce the amount of waste generated this will help to keep the cost of waste collection down.

I can’t fit all my rubbish in my bin – what shall I do?
Make sure you are recycling as much of your waste as you can. Use your new blue lidded bin for paper, card, glass, cans and plastics.  Use your food waste caddy for all food waste including raw and cooked food. Home compost your garden waste or subscribe to the new garden waste collection service

Can I have an extra black bin or a larger black bin?
We would encourage you to see if you can slim the contents of your bin, by reviewing the items you recycle and consider if you could recycle more. The size of your black bin should be adequate if you are using the new improved recycling service and the caddy for your food waste to their full potential. The new recycling bin offers more room for recyclables over a two-week period (240 litre capacity) than the weekly recycling box collections (100 litre capacity per week).

The Council's policy for supplying extra-large bins will remain the same as it does at present. You will be able to request an extra large bin if you have either:

  • Six or more in the household
  • Two or more children in nappies
  • A medical need not covered by clinical collection (eg incontinence pants).

I’m worried about used nappies in my bin for a longer period of time. 
To avoid smells please put all used nappies into a tied bag (or double bag) before placing them in the black bin. If you are still concerned then we would advise washing your bin occasionally with washing up liquid and/or boiling water.

We appreciate that households with children in nappies may also produce a larger quantity of waste. If you have two or more children in nappies you are eligible for an extra-large bin.

Why don’t you charge for food waste collections or nappy waste collections?
The law only allows us to charge for garden waste and bulky waste collections – and a few other specialist things such as asbestos.

Why don’t you encourage people to use real nappies, rather than disposables? 
The Council does encourage people to use real nappies wherever they can. However, we are also realistic and know that not everyone will choose to do so.

What do I do with absorbent hygiene waste products (incontinence pads or sheets, stoma bags etc)?
Absorbent hygiene products (AHP) such as incontinence pads or sheets and colostomy bags should be double-bagged and placed into your wheeled bin.


I am on a sack collection – what happens to my service?
For properties on a sack collection, sacks will continue to be delivered on an annual basis. 70 sacks will be provided per year. You can continue to use the recycling boxes for mixed recycling collected fortnightly. Properties who have a sack collection will be written to separately with all of the details.  

I have a Pull Out And Return service, will it still continue?
Yes – if you are currently registered for the Pull Out and Return Service, then this will continue with the new service. 

How can I stop someone else from using my bin?

Unfortunately it is not possible to police the use of the waste and recycling bins by other people. If the bin is stored privately and presented either the night before or the morning of collection, this provides the smallest opportunity for someone else to put their waste into the bin. An addition of a lock to the garden waste bin is not possible as these cannot be retro-fitted and locked bins would also slow the collection crews down significantly.

Garden Waste

You can view a full set of FAQs about the Garden Waste service on our Garden Waste page