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Waste and Recycling Visitor Education Centre

Waste and Recycling Visitor and Education Centre

Waste and Recycling Visitor and Education Centre

About us

The Waste and Recycling Visitor Education Centre, based at Campground Waste Transfer Station next to the Household Waste and Recycling Centre in Wrekenton, serves the communities of Gateshead, Sunderland and South Tyneside. The Centre acts as a hub for the delivery of community and school education engagement programmes, which includes a range of waste awareness and reduce, reuse and recycling activities.

These take place both within the centre itself, and through outreach activities held within local community settings, which can be tailored to fit individual or curriculum requirements.   

The programme is enhanced by an outdoor classroom area, enabling the introduction of gardening and other activities to help visitors learn about the natural environment.

The garden benefits from a pond and dipping platform, natural vegetation, raised vegetable planting beds, a sensory herb garden, compost area, bespoke wooden bench seating depicting reuse, recycle, and energy recovery images, compost bins and a greenhouse made from plastic bottles.

Why we do what we do

The purpose of the centre is to highlight the importance of the 3R's (Reduce, Reuse and Recycle), how to recycle correctly, and to educate residents about what happens to their recycling and general waste once it leaves their homes.

The Waste and Recycling Visitor Education Centre Coordinator also promotes positive attitudes towards the environment and educates residents about ways they can take positive steps to reduce their waste and reuse items at home, school or work.

We have engaged with over 43,000 local residents over the last nine years; 4,700 annually, and we hope to welcome many more as we grow.

Reasons to visit

This waste hierarchy-related engagement programme provides opportunities for residents across Gateshead, Sunderland, and South Tyneside, to see how their local authority manages the waste that they generate.

It aims to introduce sustainable waste management practices across households, encouraging residents to think about the amount of waste that they produce, and help them to become more responsible recyclers.

Visitors will learn tips and tricks to reduce their waste and reuse common household items.

Site tours around the Waste Transfer Station (WTS) and the Household Waste Recycling Centre (HWRC) or the Energy from Waste Facility will give visitors a sense of the amount of recycling and waste that is produced from households in the local area and what happens to it.

Our offer

The sessions and activities we offer include:

  • assemblies and community talks
  • food waste reduction workshops
  • local litter picks
  • junk modelling and craft sessions
  • tours of Campground's Waste Transfer Station and local Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRC)
  • tours of the Energy from Waste (EfW) facility in Teesside.

The above list is not exhaustive, and we welcome collaboration from schools and community groups based on curriculum objectives and action projects.

At certain times of the year, we will run specific initiatives based on local and national agendas, and seasonal campaigns. If you have a project in mind, an event you wish to run, or a group that would benefit from waste and recycling education activities, then please get in touch:

WRVECBooking@gateshead.gov.uk