Furniture should be donated not cremated this bonfire night

Zero Waste Scotland calls on Scottish householders to keep furniture off the bonfire and donate for re-use via free phone line 0800 0665 820

3 Nov 14

Householders in Scottish gearing up for bonfire night are being urged by Zero Waste Scotland not to send re-usable furniture to local bonfires, but instead donate it via the National re-use phone line 0800 0665 820.

Thousands of tonnes of re-usable items are thrown away in Scotland every year, and the National re-use phone line is a free service that allows householders to arrange for large re-usable items, such as dining tables and sofas, to be collected and passed on to local re-use organisations to be used by someone else. The service was created by Zero Waste Scotland to reduce the amount of items that needlessly end up in landfill, by making it easy, free and convenient to simply pass the items on instead.

Iain Gulland, Director of Zero Waste Scotland said: “We understand that disposing of large items can be time consuming and a potential hassle, and that people want a quick and easy way to move things on. The National re-use phone line provides that quick and easy solution, to provide an alternative to leaving re-usable items out in the back yard where they become damaged by the weather, sending them to the tip or even putting them on a bonfire. There are huge environmental benefits to re-using items, and passing items on to local re-use centres also benefits local communities through creating and supporting jobs, boosting local economies and providing household items for people in need.”

The types of items commonly collected by the phone line include sofas, chairs, tables, wardrobes, white goods and beds that are still in good condition. To ensure your item can be collected, Zero Waste Scotland does advise householders to check that sofas and armchairs have their fire tags still in place to comply with regulations around re-sale, and to ensure items are not broken or damaged as they would not be able to be collected.

Encouraging greater re-use of items is a key part of Zero Waste Scotland’s work in creating a circular economy, where products and materials stay in the highest value state for as long as possible. Around half a million of sofas are sent to landfill each year in Scotland. However, around a fifth are currently re-used which generates £1.5m to the Scottish economy through sales and employment and saves the equivalent of 4500 tonnes of carbon emissions, which is the equivalent of taking 750 cars off the roads.

Re-using items is significantly more environmentally friendly than recycling them. For example, re-using 100 sofas saves 1.5 tonnes of carbon compared to recycling them. The Recycle for Scotland website has a wealth of information about how to reduce your waste and re-use more often as well as information on recycling, providing a one-stop shop for ways to become a zero-waste household.

Find out more at

Close Search

Search form