Happy New Year.

And a reminder, now that twelfth night is approaching, that the council is once again recycling Christmas trees.

On normal collection days from tomorrow (5 January) until 18 January trees will be collected free of charge, then shredded to become compost.

It’s impossible not to notice trees starting to litter the streets, they should only be put out the evening before collection, and even then not on the street unless there is no other option – the council will collect trees (and your normal rubbish and recycling) from your front garden so there’s never any need to block the pavement.

I’m away from a computer for most of today, but couldn’t not link to this story from the Wandsworth Guardian – Recycling crew find widow’s lost letters.

Essentially, and quite by accident, a recently bereaved woman had the letters and cards of condolence she had received thrown out.  When this was discovered she phoned the council and the crew went through around 1,000 orange sacks to re-unite her with the letters and cards.

It’s not the first time a story like this has been published, in which a council employee goes above and beyond the call of duty.  Some time ago there was a similar story which resulted in the retrieval of an engagement ring and more recently the story of an street enforcement officer re-uniting a woman with her stolen purse.

The recycling team – Nathan Hearne, Lee McSweeney and Mark Hudson – all deserve congratulation.  It is actions like there’s that make such a difference to people’s lives.

Well, hopefully they are recycled.

The council has been offering a recycling scheme for Christmas trees for several years and this year is no different – from tomorrow (7 January) you can leave your (real) Christmas tree out with your refuse on your usual collection day.  It will be collected, shredded and used for composting.