THIS week we launch a new monthly column from Ryedale Environmental Group, where they will showcase their work across the district

THE Ryedale Environmental Group (REG) is a recently-formed group encouraging projects that reduce our environmental impacts across the district by promoting recycling, re-use and the reduction of waste.

So far town and village-based groups have been set up in Malton and Norton, Pickering and Kirby Misperton.

A monthly meeting allows us to share successful initiatives and come up with new ideas with these new groups, but with well-established groups in Kirkbymoorside and Hovingham.

Each month this column will feature a group or project to showcase our activities. This month we showcase the Kirby Misperton group – a tiny group with big ambitions.

Kirby Misperton’s Community Recycling Corner opened last July to recycle products which would otherwise end up in landfill and which aren’t recycled by the district council.

The Kirby Misperton Environmental Group is the smallest in Ryedale with just four members, but it certainly punches above its weight with this rapidly expanding recycling project.

The initiative started with just recycling crisp packets, stored in a box outside a private house, which are returned to Walkers for recycling.

The range of items collected has now increased to include confectionary wrappers, biscuit wrappers, beauty products, dental products, and pet food pouches.

The expansion has led to the centre being moved to the village hall car park, with the kind permission of the village hall committee, giving ample space to increase the range of items collected for recycling.

The recycling company Terracycle, a global leader in recycling typically hard-to-recycle waste with a base in Ayton, is the destination for many of the items collected. These are dropped off by volunteers on an existing regular trip to Scarborough.

Other items are destined for different routes. Printer cartridges are sold to another recycling initiative, Recycle4Charity, with proceeds going to local charity, The Woodhams Stone Collection, a social history group in Norton.

Plastic bottle tops are donated to RemadeRecycled, a Yorkshire-based enterprise which makes them into beautiful marbled pens and lamps.

Another project supported by REG is the Morsbags scheme, where unwanted fabric is made into colourful bags for free distribution, reducing the use of single-use plastic bags.

The Kirby Misperton recycling centre includes a collection box for unwanted material for this project.

The Pickering-based Morsbags group, led by volunteers Brenda Foot and Daryl Cattaneo, has made more 3,000 bags that have been distributed across Ryedale.

The “Morsbaggers” have also led workshops for others to learn how to make the colourful and useful bags in Norton and Pickering, where the aim is to set up new Morsbags groups.

The most unusual items in demand at the recycling centre are mascara wands which are donated to local wildlife charity Pickering Hedgehog Rescue to remove parasites such as ticks from rescued hedgehogs prior to their re-release into the wild.

For more information on setting up a recycling scheme, go to the TerraCycle and to find out more about Ryedale Environmental Group check out our Facebook page or email