What to do with
Clothing & textiles
Please note that recycling collections and facilities may be affected by the COVID-19 situation. Please check with your local authority for updates about services. Read more
We all have clothes or textiles such as curtains, duvet covers and blankets that we don’t want any more or are past their best.
But did you know that in the UK around 336,000 tonnes of our unwanted clothing gets thrown away every year?
The good news is that there are lots of simple ways to keep all clothing in use, and out of the bin.
Clothes and textiles that are in good condition can be donated and sold for re-use. This is an important way to minimise the overall impact that clothing has on our environment.
Items that aren’t suitable to be passed onto someone else can be recycled and made into new items, such as padding for chairs and car seats, cleaning cloths and industrial blankets.
How to recycle unwanted clothes & textiles
- Check to see if your council collects clothes and textiles to be recycled.
- Drop off your unwanted items at recycling points and clothing and textile banks in supermarket and local car parks – enter your postcode below to find your nearest.
- Donate items to registered charities and re-use organisations. The Charity Retail website will help you to find your nearest charity shop.
- One of the most convenient ways to donate clothes is through registered charity collection services. Some charities, such as The British Heart Foundation, offer a free clothing collection service from your home. It's easy to arrange via their website. You don't even need to order a bag, just re-use your own bags and boxes from home.
If you are fundraising for your school, church or organisations such as Girl Guides or Scouts, there are textile companies who can arrange a collection to help you to raise money for your cause.
- Many high street retailers such as Primark and M&S now offer clothing donation banks in-store. These are sometimes called 'bring back schemes'. This means that next time you pop out to the shops, you can drop off a bag of your old clothes. Simple!