Got rubbish to remove in London? You need to read this!

Disposing of rubbish in London is, famously, a nightmare. The official list of things to consider is endless.

Have you got ID and proof of address?

Do you have money for site charges?

Are you aware of all of the vehicle height restrictions along your planned route?

Have you weighed your rubbish so that you don’t accidentally exceed the limit?

Have you checked whether you need a permit?

Does your local recycling centre or tip accept the items that you want to offload?

Got asbestos? Sorry, you’re doomed…

Yep: in an era when we all know that environmental protection is more important than ever, it’s never been more difficult to dispose of waste in an ecological way.

So… what are my options?


For DIY rubbish removal in London, you’ll need to take care of everything on the list above.

London has five waste authorities, each with their own rules. Check the West London Waste Authority, the East London Waste Authority, the North London Waste Authority, the South London Waste Partnership, and the Western Riverside Waste Authority for individual regulations and guidelines.

Hiring a van is ideal, even though this incurs extra charges. A van means that you may be able to get rid of rubbish in London in a single trip. This will save battling through traffic, thereby reducing your carbon footprint.

DIY rubbish removal is hard work, but often vital if you want to reclaim your housing deposit or avoid fly-tipping fines. One firm was recently fined a whopping £35,000, which shows how seriously the Powers that Be take it if you choose to try and dodge the formalities.

Waste removal firms

If you can’t make it to a dump yourself, and the thought of a hefty fine sends you into shivers, some companies, such as Junk London, will simply do it all for you. They already have partnerships with recycling centres and a fleet of vans, so this option may not only remove the headache but might actually end up saving you money and making rubbish removal in London less of a headache.

By hiring a firm, you don’t need to worry about permits, ID, weight allowances, or opening hours. You just have to click, and someone will arrive to take care of it all.

However, make sure you’re ecologically savvy. Always opt for a firm that has strong corporate social responsibility (CSR) credentials. Junk London is committed to responsible rubbish removal in London, but some organisations will simply take your stuff to the nearest landfill and let it rot.

Companies should be able to tell you which accreditations they have. Don’t settle for anything less than CHAS and IS09001.

Try Freecycle and Preloved

The truth is, many of the things that we think belong in a skip might be useful to others. The booming popularity of sites such as Freecycle and Preloved has shown that with a bit of communication, communities are self-made recycling machines.

Whether it’s a pile of old bricks, some off-cuts of copper pipes, or an ancient sofa, the chances are that someone out there will have a use for it.

There are many variants on the Freecycling theme, and your local area may have its own sharing website. These sites are free, and don’t ask for commission, so they’re an excellent way to offload junk.

One of the benefits of donating your unwanted rubbish is that people will normally come and collect from you, which removes the hassle of hiring vans.

Closing thoughts

Rubbish removal in London is a necessary evil. Everyone, at some point, has to go through the process. There are various options, so finding the right one to suit your needs is important.

The good news is that although London is making it increasingly hard to be environmentally friendly, the eco-options are widening in defiance. Socially responsible firms are there to help, and community based measures are flourishing.