Reuse household items

There are lots of ways you can reuse more of your unwanted household items and find quality, nearly new items in Lancashire.

Here are some of the ways you can donate, sell or find pre-loved items:

  • listings on trusted buy sell swap sites like Freegle or Freecycle
  • give away or swap with friends
  • car boot and jumble sales
  • charity, second-hand, community and reuse shops

Here are some common items you could donate, sell or swap and ideas to reuse items around the home or garden.

Donate, sell or swap

  • Beds
  • Bikes  See bike reuse and recycling
  • Books
  • Carpets and rugs
  • CDs, DVDs, records and cassettes
  • Clothes and shoes - find out how to organise a clothes swapping event on the Eden project website
  • Computers, laptops and monitors
  • Electrical appliances
  • Fridges and freezers
  • Furniture
  • Kitchenware
  • Mattresses
  • Pillows, duvets and sleeping bags
  • Plates (crockery)
  • Prams, pushchairs and cots
  • Pillows, duvets and sleeping bags (if clean and unstained)
  • Pyrex glass dishes and jugs
  • Radiators
  • Record players
  • Suitcases
  • Tools
  • Toys and games
  • Wallpaper


You can wash and reuse items in the kitchen like:

  • aluminium foil can be washed and used again
  • biscuit tins and sweet tubs, can be reused as food containers 
  • plastic bottles and spray bottle tops can be used again
  • plastic bags can be reused as bin liners

Elsewhere, all kinds of containers and glass jars can be used for storage to keep things organised in the bedroom, living room or bathroom.

Paper and greetings cards can be reused in crafty activities such as making gift tags, bookmarks and notebooks! If possible, use both sides of blank paper and reuse scrap paper for notes.

Garden and composting

Items like aluminium containers, yoghurt pots and plastic bottles can be used as seed trays.

Cardboard is a useful weed suppressant when used as mulch, or you can add small amounts to your compost bin.

Shredded paper can be placed into your home composter as it rots down quickly to create good garden compost. 

Wood ash can be added to your compost heap or around your garden. You can reuse ash for garden paths or make a narrow path across your lawn for the winter.

Keep excess soil for planting and potting. If you replace turf and have leftover, if have space you can layer the stripped turf in a pile. This will compost down to produce a great loamy top soil which can be returned back to your garden.

Use scrap tyres to make compost containers or planters.

Raw fruit and vegetables peelings as well as eggshells can be placed in a standard home compost bin. You can also compost tea (loose and bagged) and coffee grounds in your home compost bin.


Shredded paper or sawdust (if it is clean and untreated) can be reused as bedding for small animals.