Tree-mendous effort needed to recycle Christmas lights in aid of Midlands Simon

   Mon, 11th Dec, 2023

Members of the public are being urged to support KMK Metals Recycling’s annual Christmas lights recycling campaign this year, by bringing their old and broken Christmas lights to shopping centres in Tullamore, Athlone and Mullingar. For every set of Christmas lights recycled, KMK Metals Recycling will make a donation to the Midlands Simon Community.

For the past eight years, KMK Metals Recycling has been running a Christmas lights recycling campaign, starting out with just the Bridge Centre in Tullamore before expanding to include Harbour Place Shopping Centre in Mullingar and Golden Island Shopping Centre in Athlone.

Shoppers can drop off any Christmas lights that cannot be repaired or reused and place them in specially-designed trolleys located in each shopping centre.

At a recent visit to the KMK Metals Recycling headquarters as part of a Circular Economy tour of Offaly, Ministers Pippa Hackett and Ossian Smyth and Councillor Mark Hackett were very interested in the Christmas lights recycling campaign.

Minister Pippa Hackett commented: “It was a pleasure to tour the KMK facilities last week with my colleague, Minister Ossian Smyth. Minister Smyth has responsibility for the Circular Economy and shares my enthusiasm about their Christmas lights recycling campaign. We need the public to come on board when it comes to improving Ireland’s e-waste recycling rates and developing a truly circular economy. This is the perfect time of year for the people of Offaly and Westmeath to search high and low for any old or damaged Christmas lights and bring them to one of the participating shopping centres. Recycling your damaged Christmas lights is an innovative and low-cost way to support the very worthwhile work of Midlands Simon Community.”

Midlands Simon Community offers many services to people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, to help get them back on their feet as quickly as possible. The charity offers services and support to people in the Midlands region of Offaly, Westmeath, Laois and Longford and aims to help users of the service to rebuild their lives and move out of homelessness into a permanent home.

Max Kyck, General Manager of KMK Metals Recycling added, “We are hoping for a big response from the public this year. It is far too easy to realise your Christmas lights are beyond repair and just stuff them back up in the attic out of sight. Homes across Ireland have far too much hidden e-waste. It is already very easy to recycle. Anything with a plug, battery or cable is free to recycle in local authority sites or participating electrical retailers, but for Christmas lights we are making it even easier by putting collection points in three local shopping centres. Midlands Simon Community and all its volunteers need this support to offer homes to people who are homeless, provide tents and sleeping bags to those who are rough sleeping and emergency accommodation for those in crisis.”

The Christmas lights recycling trolleys will remain in place until the end of January. The public are asked not to put any packaging into the collection points.