How do you help more than 10,000 students clear out their houses at the end of term?  

An old fashioned horse and dray will be taking to the streets of Nottingham to help students clean out their homes and reduce landfill waste.

The unusual initiative is part of a waste, recycling and charity collection drive,  run by The University of Nottingham and Nottingham City Council.

As well as offering guidance on charity donation bins, drop off points for food parcels and bin collection dates, a horse and dray will be combing the streets of Lenton to collect reuseable items straight from the doorsteps of the houses being vacated.

The University has an annual drive to help reduce the waste generated when students vacate properties at the end of term but this is the first time a horse and dray has been used.

Kirsty Mckeown, Off Campus Student Affairs Assistant for The University of Nottingham, said: “The University has a strong commitment to sustainability so it is important that we encourage students to re-use and recycle their waste as much as possible.

“Students are living as part of the community and need to get rid of their waste like everyone else but for many this will be their first experience of moving out and that’s where we’ve worked with the Council to help give as much guidance as possible. Reducing the amount of waste that goes to landfill benefits everyone and hopefully the streets will look tidier as a result. We thought old fashioned horse power would be a fun, and very green, way of encouraging students and other residents in the area to think about how they dispose of items that could be put to use by others.”

Cllr Nicola Heaton, Portfolio Holder for Community Services at Nottingham City Council, said: “Our teams have been working in partnership with both Universities to ensure operations, communication and education is in place to help keep our neighbourhood clean during the student clear outs. We know the majority of students try hard to manage their waste when they leave but where some need more support we are providing further education and advice.

“We have developed a Student Action Plan in conjunction with the Universities and Community Protection which allows us to keep on top of the additional waste generated at this time of year. This also allows partners agencies to speak to landlords and students about the part they have to play in this process.

“The main responsibility should be with the students and landlords as most of the waste is generated by them but in order to keep our city clean and not let this waste blight our neighbourhoods our teams work hard to clean it.

“We will continue to work with the Universities to promote the services we offer to help, such as the FREE bulky waste service, and continue education through our Waste Officers and Community Protection to help students be responsible neighbours.

“We hope students will utilise these services to help manage their household waste as well as the horse and trap as an engaging tool to remind them of their responsibilities.”