Today I am delighted to feature a guest post by my dear friend Ruby. If you've been following The Rubbish Diet for most of the last year, you may remember her own rubbish revelations when she had a go at slimming her own bin last summer.
After working hard to sort out her compostables in her brand spanking new brown wheelie bin, her recyclables in her old blue one and reducing her HUGE black landfill bin by an amazing 50%... she only went and boogered off to Yorkshire.
Well life's not the same without her in Bury St Edmunds. And as far as rubbish is concerned Ruby certainly got a shock when she landed in the beautiful city of York. Here she is to reveal all.
It's over to Ruby, reporting live from York...
With a bag of trash for landfill in my hand, I went into the back yard, to find ... no bin!
I checked in the back access alley to the house - no bin there either! And not only were there none outside our house, there were also none outside anyone else's! Had the citizens of York all got down to zero waste already? Did no-one throw anything away?
"There are no bins," my mother explained. The council don't allow them in certain areas, because they look unsightly, all left out in the alleys.
"So what do I do with this?" I asked in horror, wielding my bag of stuff for landfill.
"Come this way, " she replied.
And I followed her to the dark recesses of the garden shed, where there sat a black bag.
"I keep it in here so cats can't get at it," she said. "They smell the food scraps, you see. They can make a terrible mess."
I shoved my rubbish inside the bag.
"And these are for recycling," she said, indicating a blue bag for paper waste, and a small green box for bottles and tins.
Brilliant that there's a bottle collection from the doorstep - but not so good that cardboard can't be disposed of via the refuse collection - after all, it accounts for quite a lot of food packaging. And the box for recyclables is so small!
What a shock to the system. Coming from Bury St Edmunds where at the bottom of my garden sat my array of three wheelie bins - blue for recyclables, black for landfill, brown for garden waste, this was quite a change around. I am now, just about, getting used to it.
Here are a few pics from round and about the area I live:
I really don't know what to think though about the fact that we have no actual bin. Good or bad? I'm still not sure. What does anyone else think?"
Huge thanks to Ruby for pulling this post together so quickly. I only asked her yesterday after discussing her latest entry on her own blog.
It really does highlight the differences across the country in how our household rubbish is managed, something that we all so easily take for granted. And it's interesting to consider the aesthetics of street-scene as an element to waste management decisions. It is true that wheelie bins can "lower the tone" of an area as indeed can rubbish bags that are left out too early.
So what's it like in your neck of the woods? Are you a wheelie big fan of wheelie bins or are you happy with your plastic sacks? And how does rubbish collection impact on your neighbourhood? I'd love to know.
To see what Ruby's up to in York and indeed the photo that inspired today's post, visit her latest blog yorkdailyphoto.blogspot.com.