Residents oppose new refuse system

By Patrick LowmanCOUNCILLORS have backed angry residents who have called for a new refuse collection scheme to be shelved amid health fears.Babergh District Council has launched a Twin Bin scheme in an effort to improve recycling figures, but the new initiative means many residents now only have the domestic waste collected once a fortnight.

By Patrick Lowman

COUNCILLORS have backed angry residents who have called for a new refuse collection scheme to be shelved amid health fears.

Babergh District Council has launched a Twin Bin scheme in an effort to improve recycling figures, but the new initiative means many residents now only have the domestic waste collected once a fortnight.

Residents in Glemsford, Great Cornard, Sudbury and Leavenheath were outraged when the first phase of the scheme was launched in July.


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The council has now received further letters of complaints and concerns over the fortnightly collections, which some residents claimed were a health hazard.

Under the Twin Bin scheme, residents get two bins instead of one - black bins for domestic waste and blue bins for recyclable materials - which are collected and emptied on alternative weeks.

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Residents have now demanded their domestic waste is collected weekly and have been given the backing of some councillors.

One resident, David Wade, from Leavenheath, said his bin had become infested with maggots.

“When the binmen arrived, the bin was crawling with maggots. This is the second time this has happened, but we never had this problem with the weekly collections,” he added.

“As you can imagine, after two weeks the smell is atrocious and with maggots crawling all over the place, surely this leads to an environmental health hazard?”

Town councillor, Albert Pearce, said: “I have been gathering local opinion over this scheme and I have not met one person in favour of it. We honestly believe it is a health hazard.

“People are in favour of recycling, but they can't understand why their domestic waste is only collected once a fortnight after they have just had a massive increase in their council tax.

“Babergh must address this situation and the scheme must be reviewed.”

So far 10,000 households in Sudbury, Hadleigh, Great Cornard and some surrounding villages have had the Twin Bin scheme introduced.

By the end of October the second phase of the scheme will cover another 8,000 homes within the district.

The scheme will then be rolled out to cover the entire 36,000 households in the Babergh district in March and April 2004.

Babergh District Council's head of environmental services, Malcolm Firth, said: “So far we have 10,000 households involved in this scheme and the complaints have been no more than expected and we don't know if the majority of the residents are against it.

“We are looking at evidence to see if the fortnightly collections are unhealthy. We did this before the scheme was introduced and found no evidence to suggest there could be a public health risk.”

He added: “People should make sure they thoroughly wrap materials that attract flies so they can not lay eggs which produce maggots.

“If we go back to weekly collections, residents are likely to see another rise in their council tax. No policy is set in stone and we do listen to the electorate and evaluate the standard of our services.”

patrick.lowman@eadt.co.uk

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