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Householders reminded of recycling service for electrical items that have lost their spark

12th December 2012

Photograph of Householders reminded of recycling service for electrical items that have lost their spark

Householders reminded of recycling service for electrical items that have lost their spark
With Christmas coming householders are being given a timely reminder that they can recycle all their old electrical items at their local recycling centre.

Waste electrical and electronic equipment recycling (WEEE) has been available at all of the Councils recycling centres since the start of 2010. In 2011, 2,258 tonnes were collected and this tonnage is on track to be even higher this year. WEEE includes everything from small items such as hairdryers, DVD players and battery operated toys to large items such as fridges, freezers, washing machines and televisions. It also includes fluorescent light tubes, standard light bulbs and energy efficient light bulbs.

Chairman of TEC Services, Councillor Graham Phillips said: Im sure every household has a broken toaster, hairdryer, an old television set or a redundant computer and cables lurking at the back of a cupboard or drawer. WEEE recycling is a great way of making sure electrical items avoid ending up going to landfill sites. Any electrical or battery operated appliances and toys, as well as larger items like washing machines and tumble drivers can be deposited and if you are in doubt, staff are on hand to help you.

We expect the service to be kept busy over the festive season and I hope everyone takes full advantage of the opportunity to recycle old appliances that may be getting replaced by Christmas gifts.

The Recycling Electrical Producers Industry Consortium (REPIC) has a contract with The Highland Council to collect WEEE from the Councils Recycling Centres. All electrical items deposited at Recycling Centres are collected by Alness-based Social Enterprise group ILM Highland who are the contractors appointed by REPIC to undertake the collections in Highland.

Wherever possible, ILM select items with a view to maximising reuse. Refurbished white goods are sold in ILMs site shop at Unit 1G, Teaninich Industrial Estate, Alness. A new computer reuse service has also recently commenced, helping to keep valuable resources in the Highlands. The remainder of the WEEE is sent for recycling.

During a recent visit to ILM Highland, Councillor Phillips met with staff to learn of the new Computer Reuse Service that ILM has recently started. This service will help to increase the amount of computers being reused instead of simply being recycled. As a social enterprise, ILM also provides work and training opportunities to local unemployed people. ILM Highland currently employs four full time permanent staff in the WEEE Recycling (Transform) Department who have previously worked for the company through a government training or employment scheme, including New Deal. At present, ILM also provides a number of Community Jobs Scotland (CJS) employment opportunities through SCVO. Sean Blake is one such CJS employee who has been working in the Transform department to help set up ILMs new Computer Reuse Service.

Sean Blake, WEEE Operative on the CJS scheme at ILM Highland says, Being local to Alness I want to stay living in my home town doing a meaningful job. It has been hard to find work, but since ILM recruited me through the CJS scheme my skills and confidence have grown so much. I really enjoy coming into work and doing something that I really like. Computers are my hobby and I feel really happy to be working at ILM helping to recondition computers for local people and charities who will benefit from this reuse service. The experience has been fantastic, and I feel confident it will help me to find long term employment in the future.

The ILM showroom in Alness that sells the refurbished white goods and computers is open Monday Thursdays from 9am-5pm and 8am -4pm on Fridays. Details of items for sale can be viewed by visiting and for further details telephone 01349 884774

Over the festive season all Highland Recycling Centres will be closed Christmas Day and on the 1st and 2nd January but will be operating as normal for the rest of the holiday period.

For further information about WEEE or for advice on waste minimization and recycling, telephone 01349 868439, email recycle[AT] or visit

Chairman of Councils TEC Services Committee Cllr Graham Phillips and Vice Convener Cllr Maxine Smith are pictured handing over some old computing equipment during a visit to ILM where they met WEEE Operative Sean Blake (left) and Recycling Manager Kenny Horsfield.

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