Monthly Archives: August 2015

Recycling: When Did We Start?

We imagine recycling is a recent development that came with the environmental movement and typified by the multiple bins the local council provides for you to sort your rubbish. However, recycling can be traced back long before concerns about pollution and depleted resources.

Before the industrial revolution, households actively recycled everything they could as the majority of people could not afford to buy new items, which were often handcrafted and expensive. However, the start of mass production combined with greater wealth created a “disposable” culture where economically it made more sense to throw away the old because a new replacement was so affordable.

Therefore we can trace a clear link between the economy and recycling. After industrialisation, it was the Great Depression of the 1930s that fuelled a rise in recycling once again. Even today during the most recent recession there was an interest in upcycling old items as part of coping in Austerity Britain.

Historically, on a larger scale our use of fossil fuels is a form of recycling. Oil, gas and coal are all the product of decaying animals and plants from millions of years ago, compressed over time into sedimentary rock. The heat and pressure eventually producing the resources that enabled modern industrialisation.

The first known example of paper recycling was seen in Philadelphia in 1690, whereby old cotton and linen was used to make paper. The United States continued to lead the way on recycling after its declaration of independence. With the supply of goods from Europe dramatically reduced and the English army invading, citizens of this new country gathered metal, paper and cloth to be recycled to aid the war effort.

In 1801, the Koops Mill in England was granted a patent for its method of creating “paper fit for writing, printing, and other purposes” from used paper. Ahead of their time, they unfortunately failed to make a profit and were declared bankrupt just two year later. It wasn’t until 1904, that the first metal recycling plants opened in the USA to support the upsurge in the popularity of canned goods. Although, the recycling of metal would prove even more vital in achieving victory in both world wars.

Modern recycling based on environmental concerns is often seen to have started with the first National Earth Day in 1970. However, recycling on economic grounds and even by Mother Nature herself has taken place for a lot longer.

7 Inexpensive Ways to Spruce Up Your Kitchen

kitchen diy

A dream kitchen worthy of the front cover of a fancy style magazine is an ambition of many, but rarely can your budget quite fulfil your desires. However, there are many inexpensive ways to spruce up the kitchen you’ve already got.

1. Change the lighting.
Take out that horrid strip lighting and look for something more styled. For cheap buys hit IKEA for inspiration or go retro with some vintage light fittings you can upcycle. Also get creative with under-cabinet lighting for the perfect ambience.

2. Cover the worktop.
If you can’t afford a brand new worktop, then cover it up! Shop around for cutting boards, breadbins, containers or even that dish rack you’ve had your eye on.

3. Add artwork.
Either buy some cheaply or make your own, but liven up those empty walls, nooks and crannies with some art. An easy and creative way to stamp your personality on the heart of your home.

4. Change your handles.
To modernise a dated kitchen simply replace the cupboard handles with cheap, but stylish replacements. A quick job, that even the most DIY shy can achieve, it instantly makes your kitchen more contemporary. If you want to go further, replace your sink tap too!

5. Add a blackboard.
Either buy a blackboard or simply paint a cabinet with blackboard paint for this creative and informative addition to your kitchen. Whether you use it as a diary, shopping list or a creative space, a blackboard adds that lived in look and keeps you organised.

6. Freshen up your tiles.
Many kitchens seem held in the past by their style of tiles. Update these on the cheap with either tile paint or buy easy to apply peel and stick wall tiles to bring your kitchen into the twenty-first century.

7. Add flowers and/or fruit.
A fruit bowl or flowers adds instant colour and warmth to a kitchen. Although, make sure to dispose of them as they lose their freshness. The added benefit of a fruit bowl, it is can encourage you to grab one of your five a day as you pass by, while the fragrance of fresh flowers is unbeatable.

Wait and Load Skip Service

wait and load

Do you need a skip but don’t have a place for one overnight?

When you have a large amount of waste to remove from a home or commercial building, hiring a skip is the obvious answer. Sometimes, however, there isn’t an area to place the skip for any length of time. This might be due to parking restrictions, a congested street, a narrow lane or you may need a permit and haven’t had time to apply for one. Whatever the reason, the skip service you need is a Wait and Load service.

What is a Wait and Load skip service?

In a nutshell, the skip lorry waits while you load. It is a rapid turnaround service that makes sure the skip is on the ground for a minimum amount of time. Book the skip and it will be dropped off, left for 30 to 60 minutes as prearranged, and then collected and taken away again.

Wait and Load is a highly efficient way to get rid of building, home and garden waste. It is quick, convenient and clean. It can save on council permit costs and the time it takes to arrange them, and it can ease problems with nearby residents when space is tight. It’s a rapid service with very little fuss – so speedy your neighbours won’t even have time to notice a skips’s been there.

Tips on getting the most from a Wait and Load skip service

As time is of the essence with this service, it is very important to be as prepared as possible. Make sure all the waste you need to dispose of is as close to the access as you can get it ahead of time. So anything upstairs, get downstairs – anything near the back of the building, get to the front etc. Pack it into easy-to-move containers if you can, so you can get it out and into the skip with ease. Make sure you have as many people helping as possible, and that they are all ready to move when the skip arrives. Have everyone suitably equipped with gloves, masks and boots where needed. Get a wheelbarrow or trolley ready to speed things along too. Being prepared is key to getting the best out of the Wait and Load service so take a little time to organise your waste, and things will go without a hitch.