Recycling Games

Students are generally poor recyclers and often fail to prioritise recycling into their daily lives. This student recycling campaign engaged with students at the University of Bolton. It created a ‘real life’ physical game that was used at events on and off campus to encourage students to recycle in a fun way.

Beat the Bin Men

Student recycling campaign: Beat the Bin Men

Student recycling campaign: Beat the Bin Men

The student recycling campaign worked with students at the University of Bolton to design a fun, competitive game around recycling. A competition was held with students at the University to find the best design. The wining entry was a game called ‘Beat the Bin Men’.

The game was designed in the style of a Total Wipeout /I’m a Celebrity style assault course. Teams would go head to head in a race against the clock through a 5 stage assault course wading through smelly socks, rat runs, rubbish bags and slime. The winner is the team who collects the most recycling items along the way!

Throughout the campaign the Up and Forward team and students held a range of activities including:

  • An accommodation clear out with the British Heart Foundation
  • Sewing workshops
  • Information stands
  • Delivery of recycling bags to aid recycling.

New students to Orlando and Hollins Halls, The Packhorse and The Bank were also presented with a recycling bag, poster and leaflet informing them about recycling and re-use of unwanted items. Commuter students were given generic information leaflets which were distributed at the Bolton University fresher’s fair in a fresher’s pack.

The game was played at the University’s Halls of Residence and at Fresher’s Fair.

To view pdfs of campaign materials please click on the link below:

Leaflets and Media


The recycling games campaign has successfully changed behaviour. Of those asked a quarter of students said they are now recycling more since the campaign. Success was also seen with increased levels of awareness for both recycling waste collection services. The level of committed recyclers has also increased. Barriers are still being presented, such as forgetfulness, while accessibility is still a concern to some students.

To view the full case study please click on the link below:

Recycling Games Bolton