Students across 10 universities in the UK have saved 922 tonnes of recycling from landfill as part of an initiative to boost recycling rates through innovative recycling activities across university campuses in the UK.

Launched in Recycling Week in September 2019, each institution was given £1,800 in funding to rally students and staff through various campaigns with the chance to secure £15,000 to invest in future recycling initiatives. To access the grant, each university submitted an application highlighting how they would spend the funds, from zero waste Christmas markets to upcycling tie dye events. The RecycleLeague competition was run by SOS UK on behalf of NUS (National Union of Students) and funded by Coca-Cola.

Over a two-month period, 10 universities were evaluated on their increase in recycling rates in comparison to the same period the previous year, as well as overall engagement with students and the local community. The competition saw the average recycling rate increase by 8.33% across the participating universities, recycling 70 tonnes more than in the same period in 2018.

The University of Worcester was named the winning institution, seeing the biggest uptick in its recycling rates by 28% against its baseline for the previous year. Some of the recycling activities across the country included a Thames littler-picking event, DIY soap making, cooking workshops to highlight exciting ways of reducing food waste, fast-fashion workshops teaching people the benefits of upcycling, and recycling-themed quizzes on social media to educate people about recycling, with the various campaigns engaging more than 39,000 people. The University of Worcester focused its activities in its St John’s campus halls of residence. The on-campus campaign was designed by second year Digital Creative Media students and involved a video and a ‘bin poll’ game. Students visited flats around the campus and talked to the occupants about recycling and ensured they had an accurate poster explaining what materials went in which bin. 

Katy Boom, Director of Sustainability at University of Worcester, said:

“Students and staff were really committed to boosting recycling efforts and are passionate about continuing its legacy moving forward. The activities the students undertook, particularly giving more information, proved really effective. Thanks to the prize money from Coca-Cola, we’re planning to run workshops with local community groups in Worcester, and we’ll be working with a local social landlord and the city council to run a similar competition for local people.”

Ross Renton, Pro Vice Chancellor at the University of Worcester, said:

“We’re thrilled that the efforts our students and staff are making towards a more sustainable society have been recognised in this way.  This builds further on the University’s growing reputation for sustainability, which has seen us consistently among the top most sustainable universities in the People and Planet University League for over a decade, and the winner of the 2019 Green Gown Awards’ Sustainability Institution of the Year.”

Zamzam Ibrahim, NUS National President and founding trustee of SOS UK, said:

“The 2019 RecycleLeague saw a significant increase in recycling across UK universities thanks to the development of some innovative and engaging approaches to recycling.

“If all 140 UK universities were to take part in RecycleLeague, then we could increase the amount of recycling by 994 tonnes compared to normal, which could reach 3,000 tonnes across a 12-month period if activity was sustained throughout the year.”

Gordon McSkimming, Sustainable Packaging Manager at Coca-Cola European Partners (CCEP), said:

“It’s inspiring to see so many young people looking into new ways to influence behaviour and attitudes when it comes to recycling. This is something we’re passionate about at CCEP too – we’re committed to reducing our environmental impact. All of our cans and bottles are already recyclable and by June 2020, we’re doubling the amount of recycled material to 50% in all plastic bottles. We recognise our responsibility in helping other institutions and communities play their part to make a widespread impact – no matter how big or small. The results from the 2019 competition and efforts from NUS and the universities who took part are really impressive. Funding the RecycleLeague competition enables us to engage with a generation that will have a significant part to play in driving sustainability now and in the future.”

You may also be interested in these articles:

Sponsored Video

Register, Login or Login with your Social Media account:


Upcoming FE Events

Advertiser Skyscrapers

Newsroom Activity

AELP Events added a new event 2 days ago

Designated Safeguarding Lead Training in FE

Overview It is a statutory requirement for professionals meeting ‘robust 2-yearly training’ for those with a lead or designated professional role...

  • Thursday, 14 October 2021 09:30 AM
  • Online

Latest Education News

Further Education News

The FE News Channel gives you the latest education news and updates on emerging education strategies and the #FutureofEducation and the #FutureofWork.

Providing trustworthy and positive Further Education news and views since 2003, we are a digital news channel with a mixture of written word articles, podcasts and videos. Our specialisation is providing you with a mixture of the latest education news, our stance is always positive, sector building and sharing different perspectives and views from thought leaders, to provide you with a think tank of new ideas and solutions to bring the education sector together and come up with new innovative solutions and ideas.

FE News publish exclusive peer to peer thought leadership articles from our feature writers, as well as user generated content across our network of over 3000 Newsrooms, offering multiple sources of the latest education news across the Education and Employability sectors.

FE News also broadcast live events, podcasts with leading experts and thought leaders, webinars, video interviews and Further Education news bulletins so you receive the latest developments in Skills News and across the Apprenticeship, Further Education and Employability sectors.

Every week FE News has over 200 articles and new pieces of content per week. We are a news channel providing the latest Further Education News, giving insight from multiple sources on the latest education policy developments, latest strategies, through to our thought leaders who provide blue sky thinking strategy, best practice and innovation to help look into the future developments for education and the future of work.

In Jan 2021, FE News had over 173,000 unique visitors according to Google Analytics and over 200 new pieces of news content every week, from thought leadership articles, to the latest education news via written word, podcasts, video to press releases from across the sector, putting us in the top 2,000 websites in the UK.

We thought it would be helpful to explain how we tier our latest education news content and how you can get involved and understand how you can read the latest daily Further Education news and how we structure our FE Week of content:

Main Features

Our main features are exclusive and are thought leadership articles and blue sky thinking with experts writing peer to peer news articles about the future of education and the future of work. The focus is solution led thought leadership, sharing best practice, innovation and emerging strategy. These are often articles about the future of education and the future of work, they often then create future education news articles. We limit our main features to a maximum of 20 per week, as they are often about new concepts and new thought processes. Our main features are also exclusive articles responding to the latest education news, maybe an insight from an expert into a policy announcement or response to an education think tank report or a white paper.

FE Voices

FE Voices was originally set up as a section on FE News to give a voice back to the sector. As we now have over 3,000 newsrooms and contributors, FE Voices are usually thought leadership articles, they don’t necessarily have to be exclusive, but usually are, they are slightly shorter than Main Features. FE Voices can include more mixed media with the Further Education News articles, such as embedded podcasts and videos. Our sector response articles asking for different comments and opinions to education policy announcements or responding to a report of white paper are usually held in the FE Voices section. If we have a live podcast in an evening or a radio show such as SkillsWorldLive radio show, the next morning we place the FE podcast recording in the FE Voices section.

Sector News

In sector news we have a blend of content from Press Releases, education resources, reports, education research, white papers from a range of contributors. We have a lot of positive education news articles from colleges, awarding organisations and Apprenticeship Training Providers, press releases from DfE to Think Tanks giving the overview of a report, through to helpful resources to help you with delivering education strategies to your learners and students.


We have a range of education podcasts on FE News, from hour long full production FE podcasts such as SkillsWorldLive in conjunction with the Federation of Awarding Bodies, to weekly podcasts from experts and thought leaders, providing advice and guidance to leaders. FE News also record podcasts at conferences and events, giving you one on one podcasts with education and skills experts on the latest strategies and developments.

We have over 150 education podcasts on FE News, ranging from EdTech podcasts with experts discussing Education 4.0 and how technology is complimenting and transforming education, to podcasts with experts discussing education research, the future of work, how to develop skills systems for jobs of the future to interviews with the Apprenticeship and Skills Minister.

We record our own exclusive FE News podcasts, work in conjunction with sector partners such as FAB to create weekly podcasts and daily education podcasts, through to working with sector leaders creating exclusive education news podcasts.

Education Video Interviews

FE News have over 700 FE Video interviews and have been recording education video interviews with experts for over 12 years. These are usually vox pop video interviews with experts across education and work, discussing blue sky thinking ideas and views about the future of education and work.


FE News has a free events calendar to check out the latest conferences, webinars and events to keep up to date with the latest education news and strategies.

FE Newsrooms

The FE Newsroom is home to your content if you are a FE News contributor. It also help the audience develop relationship with either you as an individual or your organisation as they can click through and ‘box set’ consume all of your previous thought leadership articles, latest education news press releases, videos and education podcasts.

Do you want to contribute, share your ideas or vision or share a press release?

If you want to write a thought leadership article, share your ideas and vision for the future of education or the future of work, write a press release sharing the latest education news or contribute to a podcast, first of all you need to set up a FE Newsroom login (which is free): once the team have approved your newsroom (all content, newsrooms are all approved by a member of the FE News team- no robots are used in this process!), you can then start adding content (again all articles, videos and podcasts are all approved by the FE News editorial team before they go live on FE News). As all newsrooms and content are approved by the FE News team, there will be a slight delay on the team being able to review and approve content.

 RSS IconRSS Feed Selection Page