A community recycling group has donated £1,750 to charities across the district after achieving the most actions to reduce waste in a year.

Epping Forest Recycling Rewards scheme encourages residents to earn the most ‘green points’ by reducing contamination, reuse and recycling items as much as possible.

Each month the residents who earn the most ‘green points’ win a voucher for reducing, reusing and recycling as much as they can.

Around 1,500 properties across selected blocks of purpose-built flats in Epping Forest compete against each other in activities such as food waste challenge, recycling quiz and ‘right thing, right bin’.

Over the year, individual points all contribute to a community total, with the top scoring community winning the largest share of £1,750 to donate to local charity.

Recycling Rewards members voted for the charity they would like to support. Topping the leader boards for 2019 were:

  • Waltham Abbey – £700 donated to Epping Forest Community Transport
  • Loughton – £550 donated to the Epping Forest Food Bank
  • Epping – £325 donated to Safer Places
  • Buckhurst Hill – £175 donated to The Chigwell Riding Trust

Councillor Nigel Avey, Contract and Technical Services portfolio holder presented the four charities with their donations said: “It’s great to see how residents in the selected blocks of flats are doing their bit to recycle more, as well as improving the quality of recycling by putting the right stuff in the right bin.”

“We’ve seen recycling rates increasing in Epping Forest, and it’s a real win-win to be generating donations for local causes whilst increasing the amount of recycled materials.”

In the first two years of the programme, an impressive 18,000 positive actions have been recorded across the district.

Epping Forest Recycling Rewards is provided by Jump, in partnership with Epping Forest District Council, as the leading supplier of sustainability and wellbeing engagement programmes in the UK.

Tom Slade from Waltham Abbey was one of the monthly voucher winners and has been taking part in Recycling Rewards since November 2017.

He said: “I’m a keen recycler and this scheme is a great way to get more people recycling across Epping Forest.”

Graham Simmonds, chief executive at Jump, said: “We’re really impressed by the response of residents in Epping Forest, and with more people than ever taking part, Epping Forest Recycling Rewards now has one of the highest participation rates in the country for this kind of scheme.”