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Can you hire a skip when you live in a flat?

Tuesday, April 15th, 2014

Whilst hiring a skip to use at your house, business premises or building site seems a straightforward and simple idea, many people wrongly believe that skip hire just isn’t an option for those living in flats, apartments and tower blocks.

With no garden of your own and no clear land to place skips on, where would you ever put your waste? What laws and regulations cover the use of skips in flats, and are you even allowed to hire one?

Luckily, at AMA Skip Hire, we have the solutions to your problems.

What most people don’t realise is that there are actually no special requirements or legislation concerning the use of skips in flats.

If the land around your flat is owned by your landlord or by another private owner, you may simply be able to ask permission to have the skip placed on their land. If you cannot get permission, however, and if you don’t have your own private garden, skips can often be placed on public land instead, provided you have the right licenses from the local authorities.

At AMA we will arrange all the necessary licenses for you as part of our service, helping make the whole process simpler for you. And, to make your job even easier, we can provide chutes to help get your rubbish down from your flat to the skip, without you having to carry it all down the stairs.

Don’t want a skip? No problem!

Whether you can’t get permission for a skip, or you simply want to look at alternative methods of flat clearance, AMA can help.

Our ‘Man In A Van’ service is ideal for flat clearance, letting you empty and renovate your home without that bulky neighbour offending skip.

One of our trained, legally compliant professionals (and his van) will come round to your flat to help you with whatever clearance job you have. Perfect for clearing away less bulky items, and great for when you might need a little extra help getting the job done, this service is ideal for our customers living in flats where a skip just isn’t permitted or practical.

With skips ranging from 4 to 40yards, site clearance, man-in-a-van services and even hazardous waste removal, there is nothing that AMA Skip Hire can’t help you with.

Get in touch with us today on 0845 463 8437 to find out more about all the services we offer.

5 Strange Items Found In Skips

Friday, April 4th, 2014

Whilst you could be forgiven for thinking that all skips are ever used for is disposing of garden rubbish, construction waste and broken household goods, the reality couldn’t be more different.

At AMA Skip Hire we have seen our fair share of weird waste, and so decided to scour the web for this blog post to bring you just some of the strangest items ever to be found in skips.

A Mystery Coffin:

When residents of Old Palace Road in Norwich awoke one morning in April 2007, it was a day like any other. When the time came to leave the house for work and school, however, the shocked homeowners were met by the peculiar sight of a coffin poking out the top of a skip on their street.

Presumably cautious and confused, the residents called the police who thankfully confirmed that the coffin was empty. The mystery remains (no pun intended) of how the coffin had got there, why somebody would abandon it and what had happened to its owner.

Modern Art Heist:

In 2011 five works of modern art, collectively estimated to be worth over £100million, were tossed into a skip in Paris and destroyed. The paintings were alleged to have been stolen from the Paris Museum of Modern Art by a crack team of art thieves who, when caught, claimed that they had destroyed and disposed of the masterpieces in an effort to escape.

Unfortunately, at AMA we’ve yet to find a Matisse or Picasso in one of our skips, but we’re always on the lookout. One would definitely have pride of place hanging in our office.

WW2 Artillery Shell:

To the horror of the two skip drivers who discovered it, one of the most unusual items ever found was a World War Two naval artillery shell discarded in a skip in Cornwall in 2006.

When the Royal Navy’s bomb disposal squad arrived on-scene the shell was found to be still live and, even more worryingly, mere metres from a large petrol station. The squad worked quickly to remove the bomb, which was disarmed and later destroyed in a nearby quarry. Had the bomb been detonated accidentally, the experts insisted, it would have sent potentially deadly shrapnel flying for thousands of metres around.

Who knows what could have been if not for these keen-eyed skip drivers. A lesson perhaps for anyone looking to go digging through skips, always be careful – you never know what people might be throwing away!

Valuable Vintage Posters:

Continuing with the WW2 theme, one lucky man from Newcastle managed to find a bundle of original American propaganda posters whilst walking the streets of New York. Originally distributed to businesses by the US authorities to help boost wartime morale, the posters were never actually displayed and eventually found their way into a skip on a busy sidewalk.

Luckily, eagle-eyed Steve spotted the posters whilst on a business trip to The States and fetched them home. It was only several years later, after they had been stored and forgotten about in his attic, that the posters were put on sale, at which point they were valued at over £4000 – not bad for something pulled out of a skip!

Skip Diving For Treasure:

Like modern-day Wombles, an army of so-called ‘skip divers’ are busy sorting through skips across the UK, making good use of the things that everyday folk leave behind, and making a tidy profit it from it too!

Although maybe not as jaw-droppingly bizarre as old bombs and priceless paintings, it is simply astonishing what people throw away in today’s wasteful society. A quick search online reveals thousands of people who have managed to furnish whole houses with just the things they have pulled from skips, from cupboards to chairs, family computers and even the odd kitchen sink!

Whilst we obviously commend the use of skips to clear away your waste, far too many people seem to forget the central part of ‘reduce reuse recycle’. Often many of the things that we throw away could be reused, either by passing it on to friends and relatives or by donating it to charity. So when you start your spring cleaning, spare a thought for what could be reused, rather than just disposed of.

Skip hire rules and regulations | AMA Skip Hire Blog

Thursday, March 13th, 2014

Hiring a skip for your house or flat – rules and regulations around skip hire

When hiring a skip to remove rubbish from your house, flat or even garden, you may be unaware of the environmental and safety regulations surrounding skip hire that may affect you. Our aim is to highlight some of the issues regarding domestic skip hire and what risks you could put yourself and others at, if they are not adhered to.

What can’t be put into a skip?

All persons renting a skip for domestic work are prohibited from putting the following items into a skip:

  • asbestos
  • fridges
  • oil and other accelerants
  • tyres
  • paint
  • pesticides
  • medical and clinical waste

This is by no means an exhaustive list of items, but cover the main areas of waste that are considered to be a risk to public health or environment. If these items are put into your skip, either by accident or fly tipping, the skip hire company may refuse to remove the skip or charge you additionally for removing the toxic waste.

Fly tipping in skips

Fly tipping is an issue you may face whether the skip is kept on private or public land and is something that you should be vigilant about as there were 711,000 incidents of fly tipping last year, costing the UK economy £36.4 million (DEFRA), most of which were domestic waste items.

In the eyes of the law, you are responsible for the waste put into your skip. The illegal practise of fly tipping is dangerous, as you don’t know exactly what has been thrown into the skip, it may also be over filled causing hazards for passers by. To combat this issue, using a cover for your skip if it is kept on site over night may be advisable; alternatively you could invest in a closed skip that can be locked. Both of these solutions would also prevent from any dust or light contents from blowing out of the skip.

Skip licences

If you are intending to keep your skip anywhere which isn’t your own land, you’ll need to gain permission from the relevant person or authority before the skip is delivered.  It is the law for any skip left on a pavement or public highway (e.g. your street) to have a license to be there. The majority of councils allow the skip hire companies to apply for these permits on your behalf, but some require you to do this personally. If this is the case, make sure you organise the permit in advance of your skip being delivered as the license can take a few days to process.

Most licenses require your skip to be kept in the following fashion:

  • Not blocking any pavements or entrance/exits (unless specific permission is granted)
  • Not blocking or covering any utility access points e.g. manhole covers
  • Not placed within 15m of a junction
  • May need a parking suspension if the skip is on yellow lines, or in a pay and display bay

Your skip hire company should be able to help you with these restrictions and advise you on the best place to have the skip positioned, if you are unsure.

Safety requirements for skip hire

There are some important safety aspects which domestic skip users should be aware of, these safety regulations should be carried out by your skip provider, but checking them is always recommended to keep the public safe, not only this but you could be fine £1000 if they are not adhered to!

  • A contact name and phone number of the skip hire company should be clearly marked on the skip in case of an emergency.
  • Reflective markings must surround the edge of the skip
  • Traffic cones must be used to guide the traffic around the skip
  • Night time safety lamps should be used

Just a small amount of research is needed before you choose to hire a skip which may save you a lot of hassle further down the line if something were to go wrong. It is always worth checking with your local authority’s website about the local restrictions on skip hire as they can enforce regulations, for example skips cannot be parked on the highway in Greenwich and Westminster over the Christmas period.

AMA is dedicated to delivering great customer service nationwide.  We have a team of experts who are dedicated to helping you find the right product and service for your needs, and with an 80% recycling rate, we are also dedicated to being environmentally responsible. If you decide that a skip isn’t suitable for your needs, if you live in an area where there is no space for a skip, AMA can offer convenient alternatives such as our Man in a Van service. Call our friendly team today on 0845 4638 437 for more information.

What can be put into a skip? And where can you dispose of these things?

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014

Skip companies have varying rules of what can and can’t be put into a skip. The majority of these are the same, but may differ if they have the facilities to accommodate for specific items. These items are commonly queried but cannot be put into skips:

  • Fridges/freezers
  • Asbestos
  • Plasterboard
  • Batteries
  • TVs/Electronics
  • Paints/Solvents
  • Fluorescent lights
  • Tyres
  • Clinical/ medical waste
  • Florescent tubes
  • Oil
  • Hazardous/ toxic material

Why can’t certain items be put into a skip?

The waste processing plant may not have the facilities to recycle or dispose of these items; they may be ‘soiled’ meaning they are no longer suitable for use e.g. medical waste. There may also be no current demand for the end product of the recycled item, so no investment has been made into cheaper recycling methods. It can be more cost effective to make new products instead of recycling the old one. For example, television sets could be recycled, but because they have so many different elements, they are time consuming and expensive to disassemble.

Why do people still choose to put these items into skips?

It mainly comes down to cost. Disposing of these non-recyclable items costs money that some people decide not to pay. Instead, they will illegally dispose of potentially dangerous items in skips or other places (fly tipping) and allow someone else to deal with the clean up. This is a national issue which costs the UK taxpayer £36.4 million, and that is just the cost of clearing the contaminated site.

What happens if someone contaminates my hired skip with this type of waste?

This is a common problem with skips when left in driveways or roadsides over night; people take advantage of a ‘free’ disposal opportunity.

If you notice that something has been put into your skip, especially if it’s an item listed above, its worthwhile trying to track down the owner of the item and informing the authorities. Contacting the skip hire company is also advisable as you may be charged an additional fee for removing the item. Although the dumped waste is not yours, you will be responsible for it because it is in your skip. To avoid this, prevention is better (and cheaper) than a cure; cover your skip at night to prevent any unwanted items being deposited in it. Even having domestic bin bags in your skip could cause you to be fined if you have declared the skip for building use only (i.e. rubble, bricks, dirt etc.).

If I want to dispose of these items, how can I do this?

Depending on your local council recycling arrangements, they may be able to collect these items from you for a fee. Otherwise, registered waste carriers will have to collect the waste and remove them whilst adhering to the guidelines set out by the Environment Agency.

What should I do if I’m not sure?

Skip hire companies should be able to give you help and advice on the best practises for removing different types if waste. You can call AMA Skip Hire who has friendly, experienced staff, and they will be able to advise you on the best and most cost effective method of waste removal to fit your needs. Contact the AMA Waste Management team on 0845 4638 437 for more information.

The cost of fly tipping and the damages to the environment

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

Few people would disagree that fly tipping, the illegal dumping of waste, causes massive damage to our environment and is an ugly eyesore, whether it takes place in the countryside or an urban area.

Over 711,000 cases of fly tipping were reported in England alone in 2012/13. Of these cases only 17% were single items like furniture, and incredibly over 300,000 cases involved vans and lorries full of waste, meaning that an enormous quantities of illegal waste are being dumped all around us. Statistics show that fly tipping occurs across the country, in all sorts of areas, from roads and parks to council land and farms, affecting all of us.

The cost of clearing up the mess and of prosecuting those involved is staggering. Clearing waste sites cost £36.4 million whilst enforcement of the laws cost £15.2 million, meaning that fly tipping cost the taxpayer over £50 million last year alone. The statistics provided by DEFRA do show that the prevalence and cost of this crime have been dropping each year, but the impact is still far too high for our liking.

More than all that, the costs to you or your business if you were caught fly tipping (which we know you’d never do) can be very hefty. Fines of up to £50,000 and 5 years imprisonment should be enough to put anyone off, but sadly it doesn’t.

Helping protect the environment from fly tipping

At AMA we firmly believe that all waste should be properly disposed of and as much of it recycled as possible. We aim to keep our recycling rates, the amount of your waste that we recycle, above 80%, helping to protect the environment and do our part to undo the damage caused by fly tippers.

With skip hire from AMA, you can be confident that we are managing your waste in the most responsible fashion. Not only do we recycle as much as we are able, we have all the necessary permits and licenses and have signed up to several optional agreements to help reduce overall waste. You can also be confident that our staff work to the highest standards, all waste being managed by certified workers following all the legal guidelines to ensure that we are as responsible as possible.

We offer a huge range of skip hire and waste management services to suit any need. From house and garden clearance to construction and hazardous waste, we provide all the solutions you will need to get your site clear efficiently, cheaply and in the most environmentally friendly way. Our next-day, nationwide service means that no matter how urgent your job, there’s never a need to not dispose of your waste properly through AMA.

Get in touch with us today to discuss all your waste management needs and find out how we can help.

Statistics provided by DEFRA. See for more information.

House and Garden Clearance – Make The Perfect Start To 2014

Tuesday, February 4th, 2014

With Christmas over and the new year in full swing, your house, like many, may be starting to look a little cluttered. With the New Year comes a fresh start and what better way to set yourself up for 2014 than clearing out all that unwanted rubbish.

Maybe you’re planning a refurbishment or extension of your house, clearing space for a new arrival or simply need to make better use of the space you have. Whatever the task, AMA has a solution for you.

It’s AMAzing (see what we did there?) how quickly it all adds up – each birthday, Christmas and almost every day in between we are buying or being given new things for the house, garden and our wardrobes, but when was the last time you had a really good clear out? All that stuff, collected over the years, has to go somewhere, and chances are that it’s been piling up in your house for some time now.

Now, obviously not everything should be thrown away; clothes can always be donated to charity shops and perhaps family and friends could use some of the not-so-old appliances or furniture. It’s not just household items that need to go though, as your garden, neglected over the winter months, is sure to contain all sorts of waste ripe for the skip. Why not get it cleared now, leaving you free to spend the warmer months out enjoying your garden, not cleaning it up.

With as much given away as possible, if you’re anything like us you will still have plenty left to go, and that’s where AMA comes in with our great line of skips and waste services to suit every need.

Skip Hire for House Clearance from AMA Skip Hire

At AMA, we offer a wide range of skips, of all shapes and sizes, which would be perfect for the job of decluttering your household. Many of our skips are designed to be small enough to fit in your garden or driveway too, saving you money on permits and the hassle of a street-based skip, whilst still having the capacity to hold as much household and garden waste as you can find.

Our priorities, unlike our competitors’, are customer service and being environmentally friendly in everything we to. To that end, more than 80% of all the waste that we handle gets recycled and all of the products and services that we offer are as environmentally sound as possible. Of course, we also always follow all the latest laws and guidelines, leaving you confident that we are handling your waste responsibly.

With our next-day skip delivery service covering the entire UK, there is no one we can’t help, whatever the job is. Plus, with all of our staff having direct phone numbers, you can deal with the same person every time to get the personalised and helpful service that you need.

We guarantee that you will be blown away, by not only our product range but the fantastic, passionate staff that we have ready and waiting to help you. Call us today on 0845 4638 437 to discuss your job and find out how we can help you make the perfect start to 2014.

Skip Hire over Christmas

Tuesday, December 17th, 2013

Christmas is a time of year when many people naturally find themselves in need of a skip, but there are issues with skip hire over Christmas that you may need to consider.

There are a whole host of reasons why you might need to hire a skip this Christmas, for example:

  • Replacing tired old furniture or appliances with a new three piece suite or labour-saving device.
  • Clearing out the junk from the spare room for relatives to stay over the festive period.
  • Dealing with waste from pre-Christmas home improvement or decorating.
  • Using your time off work to tackle all of those gardening tasks you’ve been putting off.
  • Dealing with the aftermath of a big festive party.
  • Not to mention, of course, recycling all of that wrapping, packaging, and the poor, old Christmas tree once it’s all over.

For any of these tasks a small 4yd skip or medium-sized 6yd skip can be an ideal solution and save you dozens of trips back and forth to the local recycling centre.

There are two principle issues with hiring a skip over the Christmas period.

First, many skip hire companies close for an extended period around the Christmas break, so you may find it tricky to find a skip for the dates you want. AMA can save you a chore here, as our nationwide skip hire service means we can usually find someone able to help on your preferred dates and at a price you’ll like.

The second thing to consider, if you need to leave your skip on the road (if you have a driveway or off-street area for your skip, this doesn’t apply to you), is that lots of local authorities have special restrictions around the Christmas period regarding the placement of skips on the highway. This can be a real problem, particularly if you live in a big city, or close to a town centre. The restrictions vary from place to place, but as an example, Westminster Council do not allow skips to be placed on the street between the 22nd of December and 2nd of January, Greenwich requires skips to be removed from the road a week before Christmas, and if you are unlucky enough to live in the middle of a Shropshire town, extra restrictions come into force as early as the second week in November. All this shows the value of local knowledge, which is where AMA’s network of local skip hire providers comes into its own and can help you find the information you need to plan your skip hire over Christmas and New Year.

Merry Christmas to all our customers.


Will Your Business Be Ready For The Waste Regulation Revolution

Friday, October 25th, 2013

Zero Waste Scotland is on a mission to turn Scotland into a waste-less society, new waste management regulations are coming into force for businesses at the beginning of next year. The regulations aim to revolutionise the way waste is presented for collection, so what does this mean for your company and are you prepared? (more…)

EA Celebrates Drop In Waste Crime Prosecutions For 2012/2013

Monday, October 21st, 2013

The UK’s Environment Agency has, this month, announced that the number of waste-related criminal convictions for the year 2012/13 fell to a record low, with levels dropping by almost 100 convictions since 2011.

New Waste Management Plan ‘Could Increase Disposal Rates’

Monday, October 7th, 2013

A new waste management plan for UK councils unveiled by Defra ‘lacks vision’ and could increase waste disposal levels, hindering recycling rates according to feedback from the Local Authority Recycling Advisory Committee (LARAC).

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