FOR residents with a New Year’s resolution to recycle more in 2013, it is now a lot easier to get off to a good start.

Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council bosses have opened up 21 sites across the borough for people to recycle their Christmas trees for free.

The drop-off points will open from January 3 through to January 27. If residents miss the collections, Wade Road recycling centre will be able to take the Christmas conifers.

It is estimated that across the UK, eight million real Christmas trees are thrown away, creating a whopping 160,000 tons of additional waste that is either incinerated or dumped in landfill.

By using the drop-off points or the recycling centre, the conifers can be composted and turned into ProGrow soil conditioner, or wood chippings to be used in borough parks.

Councillor Robert Donnell, the borough council’s environment chief, urged residents to use the tree recycling service.

“After all the festivities are over, it can be a real pain to dispose of the tree,” he said. “By taking it to one of the locations across the borough, it can then be turned into soil conditioner which will help our gardens to bloom.”

For more information, contact the borough council on 01256 844844, or visit