What’s happening to household bin collections?

Over the coming months, there will be big changes to household bin and recycling collections, firstly from towards the end of October, and then again early in the New Year. You should receive a letter through the post from the council next month which explains what the first of these changes mean to you in practice, but these are some of the things you may want to know as we go along.

Phase one:

From late October this year, cardboard and paper will no longer be collected from your blue bag. Instead you should put card and paper out for recycling in your green bin.

You’ll know when to make the switch because the council will stick information to your green bin when you have one garden waste collection remaining, and again when the last one has been taken.

After this, if you want to continue to have your garden waste collected by the council, you’ll need to pay to subscribe to the new service.

For £39, you will be supplied with a new brown bin for your garden waste, which will be collected monthly through the Winter as well as fortnightly through the Summer. Subscribers will get 19 garden waste collections through the year, rather than the 15 you’ve received until now. The price is the same whatever point in the year you subscribe, so you get better value by signing up early.

You can subscribe online now by clicking here and completing the form.

If you do have a garden but don’t subscribe to the new service, in the future you can take your grass clippings and garden waste to a household waste recycling centre like the one on Lidget Lane, buy a home compost bin, or make your own arrangements.

And if you don’t currently have a green bin – perhaps because you don’t have a garden – you’ll need one to recycle paper and card in the future, so you can order one for free by clicking here.

From the end of October, you should use your green bin for paper and card, your blue box for tins, cans and glass, your black bin for the rest of your household waste as usual, and – if you choose to subscribe – your new brown bin for garden waste. Different arrangements will be made for blocks of flats where necessary.

The video above has been produced by the council to explain the first phase of the changes.

Phase two:

Then in the early part of 2019, the second part of the changes will come into place. The council will start to collect plastics for recycling from every household.

Paper and card will be collected from your green bin. Glass, plastics, tins and cans will be collected from your current black bin. Your blue box and blue bag will no longer be used.

This will give every property more space for recycling and mean that you can recycle more types of waste, so everyone will be issued with a new general waste bin – but this will be smaller than your existing bins. Readers of the Rotherham Advertiser voted for this new bin to have a pink lid.

The frequency of recycling collections will also change at this point, so again, more information will be available closer to the time.

Why are these changes happening?

The council needs to do two things: ensure that we all recycle more in order to get closer to the government’s 50% target, and to reduce the cost of running the service because of cuts to the council’s budget. Because there is less funding available to provide services with each year that passes, we have had to prioritise what the council is able to provide free at the point of delivery.

Last year the council undertook a big public consultation on the changes and more than 7,000 people responded. Residents told us very clearly that they wanted to have plastics collected for recycling, so we changed the council’s proposals to make this happen.

Residents also said that they find the current blue box and blue bag difficult to use, likely to get blown away or stolen, and in general people said that they prefer to use wheelie bins rather than the boxes or bags – so for most residents all their waste will now go into a bin once these changes are complete.

And finally, whilst we understand that the introduction of a charge for garden waste collections is not ideal, it does allow the council to offer a service that runs for longer during the year, responding to the comments we receive from gardeners every year that collections either start too late in the Spring or finish too early in the Autumn.

For now… Nothing changes until the second half of October. Keep your eyes peeled for the letter and calendar that will be coming through your letterbox before the end of September, or check out the council’s webpage at rotherham.gov.uk/bins.

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