Materials Recovery Facilities

The Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) – Bidston (Wirral) and Gillmoss (Liverpool)

The Materials Recovery Facilities at Bidston and Gillmoss accept mixed dry recyclable waste where itis extracted and sorted by the use of mechanical separation techniques.

There has been a steady increase in the numbers of Materials Recovery Facilities in the UK as more separate dry recyclable collections have been introduced and overall recycling tonnages have increased.

Our MRF’s employ a system of conveyors that carry the recyclables over sorting screens and other sorting mechanisms. These divide the components of the dry recyclables which pass over magnetic and eddy current separators. Advanced optical materials recognition equipment then separates out different types of materials.

There will typically be an element of hand-sorting of materials in addition to the automatic extraction of materials as part of the separation process. After the sorting of the materials there is a bulking and storage function whereby balers are used to compress some of the recyclables (cans and bottles) into dense bales for transport to the materials reprocessors. Other materials are bulked for transport.


· The Materials Recovery facility at Bidston has been open and operational since 2006. Gillmoss has been operating since 2011.

· The Bidston facility has the capacity to sort up to 80,000 tonnes of dry recyclables materials each year. Gillmoss can sort 250 tonnes every day.

· Currently the MRFs are being used by Liverpool, Halton, Knowsley, Sefton and Wirral Councils  to sort dry recyclables.