RECYCLING rates across Chichester District have increased to more than 45 per cent, but the council is working to raise that in its ‘Recycle50percent‘ campaign.

Problems with persistent “contamination” of some doorstep recycling bins will now be tackled by fines, but as a ‘last resort’, the district council has confirmed.

During the campaign, the council held roadshow events, launched information videos on the council’s YouTube channel as well as a social media campaign to help answer residents’ questions.

It also completed a successful project with the West Sussex waste partnership, which focused on recycling at properties with communal bins.

A new service leaflet with key waste and recycling information will be sent out to all residents in April and the council will be introducing a bin sticker scheme to help remind people what can be recycled.

The council is working to reduce instances of contaminated recycling created through people not putting the right items in burgundy bins.

Councillor Roger Barrow, Chichester District Council’s cabinet member for residents’ services, said: “I want to thank everyone for helping to increase the amount we recycle in the district.

“We measure the rates on a quarterly basis and over the last two quarters, we have been recycling over 45 per cent of household waste.

“This is great news, but because the rate can fluctuate throughout the year, we want to work with residents’ in order to maintain and increase it even further.

“One of the things we want to do is to ensure the recycling we collect is of a high quality so it can be reused and made into new things in the future.

“Although most residents are doing all the right things, we do still have some issues with a minority of residents who persist in placing the wrong items in their individual recycling bin.

“Because of some problems we have experienced, we have now revised our recycling bin contamination policy to help deal with these situations.

“This means we now have the power to give fines for persistent contamination.

“I must stress though, that is a staged process, and it is a tool that we would only use as an absolute last resort, where all other methods have not been able to resolve the situation.”

•To find out what can and can’t be recycled, go to www.