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Clothes recycling forum launched (11 July 2012)

A new focus group has been set up to stop thousands of tonnes of clothes going to landfill.

The Merseyside Textile Forum has been established in a bid to prevent the estimated 22,000 tonnes of the region’s clothes and textiles from ending up in landfill sites every year.

The Forum is being headed by Merseyside Recycling and Waste Authority (MRWA) and has been set up for local charities and stakeholders who currently collect textiles, with support from all of Merseyside’s district councils and the national Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP).

The principal aim of the Forum is to identify and support ways to increase the recycling and reuse of textiles. A strategy for incentivising landfill diversion is currently being developed. The Forum will look at current collection methods and markets for reuse and recycling for textiles and clothes of all quality grades.

Councillor Joe DeAsha, Chairperson of MRWA, said: “People have got the hang of recycling and preventing waste in the first place, but there is still an issue with clothes. Thousands of tonnes end up in landfill every year – and most of this will still have a value, whether it’s by donation to a charity or using the raw material to create something new.

“Hopefully the focus of this new Forum will see us reduce that 22,000 tonne figure.”

There are many options for recycling and reusing old and unused clothes and textiles throughout Merseyside. These include several Council-managed doorstep collections, textile containers at the region’s Household Waste Recycling Centres and bring banks. Local charities also take clothes, whether that is via a doorstep collection or a charity shop. Charities can sell the textiles and raise money for a good cause, or the material can be reused in places such as some African countries.

Carl Beer, Chief Executive of MRWA, said: “There are many options for re-using and recycling textiles that it’s a crying shame so much is ending up in landfill.”

MRWA is undertaking a number of projects and supporting events throughout the year – such as sponsoring Liverpool Fashion Week – in a bid to highlight the financial and environmental benefits of recycling textiles and reusing clothes.


Notes to editor:

Merseyside Recycling and Waste Authority (formerly Merseyside Waste Disposal Authority) is responsible for the disposal of municipal waste on Merseyside. Established in 1986 following the abolition of Merseyside County Council, it is a statutory Authority that works with all the local authorities on Merseyside – Knowsley, Liverpool, Sefton, St Helens and Wirral. MRWA takes a lead in advocating recycling, waste minimisation and safe and effective disposal of waste for Merseyside’s residents.  

Any charity in Merseyside who is interested in joining the Forum should email, or call 0151 255 1444.

For more information members of the media should contact:

John Lally
PR & Communications Officer
Merseyside Recycling and Waste Authority
Tel. 0151 255 2568