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Acetylene is a highly reactive, unstable gas that can suddenly decompose. This creates a significant risk of fire and/or explosion. If you are a householder that needs to dispose of acetylene, please contact us on 0300 373 3300 if you live in the Westmorland & Furness Council area or 0300 373 3730 if you live in the Cumberland Council area.


Empty uncrushed aluminium and steel aerosol cans can be recycled through can banks at some local Recycle Points. Please remember do not squash or pierce aerosols. Empty aerosol cans can be collected with other empty cans for recycling in your kerbside recycling collection - please check with your local council to see if they are accepted in your area.

Aids to daily living

Showering aids such as shower stools and bath seats; toilet aids such as commodes, toilet seats and frames; and household aids such as over-bed tables, trolleys and perching stools can be taken to your nearest Household Waste Recycling Centre where they will be collected and sent for cleaning and reuse.

Please return any walking aids such as metal crutches, walking frames and walking sticks to your local hospital - see `Walking Aids` for more information.

The charity Scope, has a really good advice section on how to donate and recycle used disability equipment.

Air Bags - Car

Car air bags are explosive devices. These are trade waste items covered by the End of Life Vehicles (ELV) Directive. Dismantling should only be done at a premises permitted under the ELV (eg scrap yards).

Aluminium cans - see Cans

Aluminium foil & trays - see Foil

Animal bedding and waste

For example, sawdust and straw. This could be composted in your home compost bin, but remember that too much of any one material in your compost bin does not make good compost. Only waste from vegetarian animals should be composted as there may be toxins in waste from meat-eating pets. Excess amounts would need to go in your normal household waste bin.


Small amounts of hard-bonded asbestos from residential property will be accepted at the following Household Waste Recycling Centres: Kendal, Barrow and Flusco in the South and East, and Carlisle, Wigton, Workington and Frizington in the North and West.

The maximum that will be accepted on any day is four sheets of asbestos per visit, and up to 3 visits making a total of up to 12 sheets or bags in a short period of time (dimensions of sheets: to be no longer than 6ft due to skip size).

All asbestos must be double wrapped/bagged and sealed prior to arriving at the site to prevent any loose fibres from escaping. Residents bringing asbestos are advised to call the site ahead of their visit to confirm if the site can accept the load as storage capacity for asbestos at the recycling centre is restricted so please contact the site you intend to use before you go. The contact details are available on the individual Household Waste Recycling Centres` page.


If you need to deal with more than a few sheets of hard-bonded asbestos or any fibrous asbestos you should contact a specialist contractor. If you need advice about dealing with asbestos on your own residential property please contact your local district council.

Additionally: We do not advise that anyone should break up their asbestos and if the waste exceeds the limits of what can be accepted at the HWRC then please contact us on 0300 373 3300 if you live in the Westmorland & Furness Council area or 0300 373 3730 if you live in the Cumberland Council area.


Wood ash - ash from wood fires, such as bonfires or wood burning stoves, can be added in small amounts to your compost bin/heap or can be dug directly into fallow ground. It can be a natural source of potassium and trace elements. It also has a liming effect and can remedy excessively acid soils. More info can be found on the Royal Horticultural Society website.

Ash from coal or anthracite is best disposed of through your local council waste collection as it has little or no nutritional value and is potentially harmful to soil, plants and consumers of edible produce.

Ash from lumpwood BBQ`s can be used in the same way as wood ash. Ash where other fuels have been added, such as briquettes is best discarded.

If you have a question about resources or recycling please call one of the following numbers
Cumberland Council: 0300 373 3730
Westmorland & Furness Council: 0300 373 3300
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