BBC2’s Wastemen is far from rubbish

The series delved into our bins and the daily lives of Newcastle's bin men – and had quite the effect on viewers...

Rubbish. It’s not exactly a sexy topic, but BBC2’s fly-on-the-wall show about Newcastle’s binmen has been a surprisingly absorbing watch. Observing what happens to all the stuff we throw away provided a shocking insight into just how wasteful we really are, and the camaraderie between the men on-screen was funny and heartwarming. Above all, it made you truly respect those who do the job.


In yesterday’s final episode we got a look at the Byker waste-processing plant where they transform 100 tonnes of uneaten food into compost every single day. Every day! It was enough to make you race to your fridge and guzzle down those soft, sad-looking tomatoes you’d forgotten about. The sheer amount of waste we generate outraged plenty of viewers, and got others calling for a little less careless throwing-away, and a lot more recycling. 

And as the Twitter debates about rubbish raged on, this excellent suggestion caught’s eye. BBC2 commissioners, if you’re reading…


All three episodes of Wastemen are available to watch on BBC iPlayer