Nick Staley



Nick Staley’s idea to disguise a wheelie bin as an attractive planter stemmed from his personal home situation. Living in a modern housing estate having open plan front gardens, the only place to position a dustbin was directly adjacent to the front door which gave rise to both an unsightly appearance and the emission of smells. Not very suitable for doorstep conversations!

Initially Nick enclosed his old fashioned circular dustbin with its rubber lid in a tapered timber compartment that he built to alleviate these problems and the solution worked fine. The cover had a hinged door to one side and a deep tray section over the top in which he then grew a variety of plants and flowers. This arrangement transformed the doorstep ambiance as it was no longer made ugly and smelly due to the dustbin being hidden and the scent from the flowers masked that from within the bin. No longer was the doorstep a place to rush away from and conversations at the door were no longer a problem when talking to visitors as there now stood a large planter radiant with scent emitting flowers. From time to time Nick would change these and plant a fresh display. Visitors found the plants pleasing and the disguised dustbin, come flower pot became a talking point. One day, when a friend arrived, he was so impressed with the change, that he said “You should patent that idea.”

Now, as Nick’s father had long been involved in patenting, Nick took his advice about the rules as these do not allow patent rights in respect of ideas that are already in the public domain prior to making an application to the Intellectual Property Office, (IPO). As the type of covered bins were generally being phased out of use patenting wasn’t appropriate. The answer to this problem was to do similar for modern wheelie bins which are taking over the streets of nations throughout the world, hence the wheelie bin cover idea was born in concept. The wheelie bin cover was then designed specifically so that its construction would suit a wheelie bin, hence the dustbin cover evolved into the wheelie bin cover. The wheelie bin cover was therefore designed and constructed in total secrecy by Nick within his garage to prove the concept’s functionality whereby the tapered box section held a wheelie bin that would be entered in a forward manner, on its wheels as intended by its manufacturers, thus positioning the opening end of the wheelie bin’s lid to pass to the rear of the container. Moving the wheelie bin in and out in this manner allows for ease of movement at all times unlike stores currently on the market which require the wheelie bin to be turned manually through 180 degrees, which in itself, is a physically difficult task even for a healthy person.

The simple arrangement of having the wheelie bin entered with its lid opening facing the rear wall of the cover with its hinge at the front, permits a link between the lid and the flower tray above to be established that allows a sliding movement of the plant tray to automatically raise and lower the wheelie bin’s lid. When the user wishes to place rubbish within the bin, the tray is easily pulled directly towards oneself and after disposal of waste the tray is then pushed backwards, thus closing the bin lid and the entire wheelie bin cover. Both the tray and the unit’s door may be locked shut to prevent unauthorised insertion of other’s waste or theft of the entire wheelie bin. Most importantly, being able to lock away the easily combustible plastic wheelie bin will prevent vandals from setting them on fire and causing damage to life, limb and property which events are occurring daily. Wheelie bins are also being stolen in order to transport stolen goods such as lead taken from church roofs and the like, or moving stolen goods from houses being raided to vehicles parked away from the scene of their crime. It is not unknown for wheelie bins to be used by murderers for moving their victims to burial sites or attempting to destroy their victim’s bodies by incineration.

Wheelie bin stores that are currently available which allow the automatic raising and lowering of the wheelie bin’s lid all require the wheelie bin to be rotated through 180 degrees and then manually shoved into place within the store in a most awkward manner with the wheels furthest away from the user which is not easy. Again on withdrawal from the store, the wheelie bin has to be dragged out and manipulated back onto its wheels. Such repeated abuse of the wheelie bin would surely ultimately cause damage to both the bin and the user.

So Nick’s wheelie bin cover has the very usable features of allowing the wheelie bin to be moved as designed on its wheels and also having a very easily moved sliding planter tray that automatically lifts the bin lid while creating an opening for the disposal of waste within and allows the closed unit to be secured by locking both the door and the tray movement which jointly prevent interference by others. The wheelie bin cover may also be permanently fixed to an adjacent wall or to the ground by means of anchor bolts so that it may be kept in a safe position against theft and abuse.

Ironically, although wheelie bins now appear in numerous countries throughout the world, Nick still has his original planter disguising his round dustbin outside his front door, because surprisingly, his local area’s county council has declined to introduce wheelie bins for household rubbish!

Please see for full details.

Wheelie Bin Cover Invention patent details :

  • Patent Publication Number GB2483302 - A storage housing for a waste receptacle was granted on 06 October 2015 with a filing date of 6th September 2010.
  • An international patent application WO 2012/032322 has been filed with a priority date of 19th August 2011.
  • European Patent Publication no. EP2614016 - A storage housing for a waste receptacle was granted in 2017
  • USA Patent Publication no. 20130162119- Storage housing for a waste receptacle. status pending...

Toilet Stopper Invention patent details:

  • Patent Publication Number GB2502470 - A Stopper was granted on 03 November 2015 with a priority date of 09 Feb 2011 in United Kingdom.
  • Application PCT/GB2012/050287 has been filed with a priority date of 9th February 2012.
  • European Patent Publication no. EP2873423 - A Stopper was granted on 7th April 2017

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