A WHITE Christmas may not be on the cards for Swindon, but the council is hoping households will make this festive season green.

In the run-up to the big day Swindon Council is urging people to think about recycling Christmas leftovers, such as cardboard and non-metallic wrapping paper.

It will even offer a doorstep collection of old Christmas trees.

But the council has warned that rubbish thrown out in black bags will not be collected.

"We have no plans to collect any extra black bags left out with wheelie bins or blue sacks, but obviously we'll be monitoring the situation," said Steve Harcourt, Swindon Council's director of environment and health.

"Our experience during the West Swindon trial also leads us to believe that we won't see a significant black bag dumping problem, but if we do we have contingencies in place to handle it.

"We will also be continuing with our enforcement activities."

In Swindon changes to waste and recycling collections over Christmas are being kept to a minimum.

The only collections to change are for those people whose collections are due on Christ- mas Day or Boxing Day.

Those due on Christmas Day will have an extra collection this Saturday, and those due on Boxing Day will have their waste collected on Saturday, December 29.

Collections of large cardboard will be made on residents' normal weekly kerbside recycling collection days in the two weeks starting on Monday, December 31.

Cardboard should be put out with recycling boxes.

Wrapping paper, confectionery tins, cardboard boxes, Christmas cards, glass bottles, cans and clean tin foil can all be put into recycling boxes.

Metallic wrapping paper, bows, tapes and ribbons, plastic tubs and trays, polystyrene and tinsel cannot.

Christmas tree collections will be made throughout January, on normal green waste recycling days - so residents will have two chances to have trees collected.

The Household Waste Recycling Centre at Cheney Manor will be open every day, except Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year's Day, and will close early, at 5.30pm, on Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve.

"The majority of the extra waste which will undoubtedly be generated over the Christmas period will be recyclable, such as paper, cardboard, foil, bottles and cans, and we will be collecting it weekly, from the kerbside, as usual," Mr Harcourt said.

"The level of support the recycling service has received so far from residents has been amazing, which is why we're confident that the vast majority of households won't have a problem managing their waste during Christmas and New Year."