Brits urged to recycle rather than bin mobiles

Pile of mobile phones

Brits are throwing away 150 million worth of old mobile phones, sending more than five million handsets to landfill sites each year.

So claims research by, as it prepares to launch its second annual National Recycle Your Phone Week, which kicks off on Monday.

UK mobile phone users have, on average, two devices just lying around gathering dust. And the volume of handsets heading to landfill is set to grow as 60 per cent of us don't plan to start recycling anytime soon, according to's research.

"People are constantly craving the latest gadget. This need to have the best and newest mobile phone on the market has resulted in many people accumulating spare handsets," said James Parker, manager of mobiles at, in a statement.

"If people recycle these surplus handsets, not only will they be doing their bit for the environment but they can also make a few pounds. Those people that have thrown away the 5.25 million phones have effectively thrown away 150 million that would have been paid out if the phones had been recycled."

The week-long campaign to educate users and encourage more of them to recycle is co-sponsored by and is being actively promoted on Twitter, where users could be in with a chance of winning a handset.

Parker added: "We hope this year's awareness week will continue to encourage people to recycle old phones for the benefit of the environment as well as gaining a bit of extra cash."

Maggie Holland

Maggie has been a journalist since 1999, starting her career as an editorial assistant on then-weekly magazine Computing, before working her way up to senior reporter level. In 2006, just weeks before ITPro was launched, Maggie joined Dennis Publishing as a reporter. Having worked her way up to editor of ITPro, she was appointed group editor of CloudPro and ITPro in April 2012. She became the editorial director and took responsibility for ChannelPro, in 2016.

Her areas of particular interest, aside from cloud, include management and C-level issues, the business value of technology, green and environmental issues and careers to name but a few.