Discussion Forum
Refuse/recycle collections

From Howard T
Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Is anyone experiencing difficulties in getting their recyclables collected? Calderdale (or Sita) have failed to collect recyclables on the two scheduled dates, we complained to Calderdale, they promised to come back and collect and failed to do this - twice.

From Elaine P

We haven't yet had any recycling collected by SITA - we haven't even had the boxes & bags delivered which we're supposed to put everything in. I've phoned Calderdale 5 times over the last 2 weeks to complain and have been told it's been logged as a miscollection which gives SITA 48 hours to come out and pick it up. Still nothing. Twice I've been promised that a supervisor/manager will call me back but I'm still waiting. They're supposed to be sending me a complaint form.

From Tim N

Well three weeks now; no general rubbish collection, no recycling collection. The street is starting to fill with an assortment of bin bags, white plastic bags, food containers and old kerbside boxes (we've still no got a green sita box) - are we heading for a summer of discontent?

From Howard T
Tuesday, 5 May 2009

We've a similar story. Except at least we've been supplied with the boxes etc (although the food bags seep -so they haven't properly invented those yet). But we've had no collections of rubbish or recyclables. Calls made to Calderdale, they say they'll come and collect -but don't.

I finally got a response when I spoke to someone in environmental health (or some such department) and enquired 'whether it was acceptable for a premises to leave waste food outside for 2-3 weeks.' Emphatically no I was told.

They also conceded that if this was left outside a take-away premises, their guys with their clipboards would close them down.

So I said that I need to make a complaint against Jonathan Lord, (a good man no doubt, but a name from the management of all this at Calderdale, nothing personal) on the grounds that acceptable environmental standards/public health standards are not being maintained.

I also stated that unless the rubbish/recyclables was collected with 48hrs, I would be throwing it through the doorway of the town hall and bring a press photographer with me.

We got our rubbish/recyclables collected very soon after. But (unknown to me at the time), they walked past all the other rubbish left out by my neighbours... left that where it was.

I don't agree with making the type of threats I had to make to get the Council to get its subcontractors to do their job. It should not be necessary, or the way to go about it. My wife had some nice, courteous exchanges with Calderdale, but nothing happened.

From John D
Sunday, 10 May 2009

Is anyone interested in some organised community action to encourage the council to honour their responsibilities re disposal of refuse?

We are paying more council tax for a dramatically reduced service.
Biodegradeable slops are being left uncollected, which is a problem when they are knocked over.

Where they have failed to provide wheely bins large enough for 2 weeks garbage, the bin bags are accumulating and spilling across the pavement, being ripped open by dogs and cats, and attracting rats.

The council has been informed of the above, but failed to make any effective response within 10 days. The reason given for failure to provide wheely bins was that we have no back yards, and the bins would obstruct the pavement!

Can anyone suggest an easy way of finding out how many households didn’t get a wheely bin?

Is it ‘only’ the majority, without a back yard, and did those without a back yard, but with a ginnel along the rear of the houses get one?

The best option would be that those without wheely bins should continue to receive weekly rubbish collections of their main bin. For them, waste collection must be one of the few benefits obtained for their council tax.

From Graham Barker
Sunday, 10 May 2009

In an excess of zeal last Thursday, the Sita recyclers took the contents of a Kerbside box that I keep as a handy pre-sorting bin next to my front door, several yards back from the pavement. This included several items that weren’t for recycling.

Overall, I suppose we’re still technically in the teething problems stage, but the prospect of coming out of it smiling doesn’t look good. The new system is so prescriptive that I feel I’m providing Sita with a service, rather than the other way round. My suspicion is that Sita underbid to get the contract, and now can’t make a profit out of doing the job properly.

I agree with John that a weekly collection should be reinstated for those still on bins. A bit of Googling throws up the information that there are 90,000 premises in Calderdale, of which 25 per cent are deemed unsuitable for wheelie bins. That’s a lot of black bags languishing on pavements, and already I’ve seen several ruptured bags. Sita appears not to make any attempt to clean up spillages, so this will be a mounting problem.

Calderdale don’t seem bothered about the potential for a return to Victorian hygiene standards, as they have this naive view that if everything is recycled, there won’t be any noxious waste to cause a problem. Leaving aside the sheer ugliness of bits of refuse all over the place, let’s start the list with nappies, cat litter, take-away trays and wrappings, miscellaneous chemicals...

From Lou R
Monday, 11 May 2009

Driving through the Bell Hall area of Halifax the other day, I was dismayed to see so much litter, most of which consisted of flattened liquid containers.

I can only presume that either some person has kicked over various recycling bags and scattered the lot, or that Sita are not doing their job properly in collecting and making sure this debris goes into the wagon.

In any event, in no way did it look attractive, and generally there does seem to be more rubbish on the streets since this recycling programme was wheeled out.

Additionally, after having phoned the helpline once and e-mailed 'Recycle for Calderdale' twice, I am still without a green bag for recycling newspapers.

From Andrew Hall
Monday, 11 May 2009

Up in my neck of the woods, things seem to have more or less reverted to the old system.

Having been told that some of us were to receive wheelie bins and others not (which seems to have been detemined on the toss a coin - neither I nor my neighbours can see any other rationale!), one of the operatives recently told me that we were all staying on dustbin collection. It looks as though they're even collecting the black bags from the dustbins themselves (ie rather than us having to put them on the edge of the road every fortnight.)

My only slight concern is the number of dustbin bags I and others are amassing. Every fortnight I receive five bags (as opposed the the previous weekly bag - quite adequate for most people). So that's 3 surplus bags per fortnight or 78 per year. So given that 25% of the 85,000 households in Calderdale are receiving the same treatment, that's well over 1.6 million surplus bags per year, which is an awful lot of unwanted plastic!

From Kate Connell
Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Andrew can I have your spare SITA issued bin bags please? The first time I got 1 bag, the second time I got 2 bags. I need more than these. If you put any other generic non-branded bags out they will not take them.

From Andrew Hall
Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Of course you can, Kate. Just send me an email and we can arrange a delivery.

From Ross M
Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Three weeks, two missed collections.

No binbags left.

Still waiting for a white bag.

Well done to all concerned.

From Graham Barker
Sunday, 10 May 2009

Sita recyclers again tried to take stuff I keep in an old Kerbside box by my front door. When I tackled them about it, they told me that (a) they now take from Kerbside boxes as well, and (b) all addresses on my road are designated 'assisted' - that is, lots of elderly people who can't be expected to carry stuff to the kerbside. Both news to me. Their assumption seems to be that they can take anything they see that looks like recycling, whether at the kerbside or not. Beware.