New waste collection service branded rubbish as bins aren’t collected for five weeks

Chris Judd with overflowing bins on Burrwood Terrace
Chris Judd with overflowing bins on Burrwood Terrace

Outraged Calderdale residents have been contacting the Courier in their droves as waste collection chaos continues to blight the borough.

The issues began at the start of August when a new waste and recycling service was introduced by the council and recycling and waste recovery firm Suez, to 94,000 households across Calderdale.

It was supposed to allow people to recycle more, but the scheme has been criticised by homeowners, many who have not had their rubbish collected for five to six weeks.

One of those people is Eileen Evans, who lives at Oak Lane, Halifax. Her rubbish has not been collected for five weeks.

Mrs Evans, 74, is housebound and her waste has to be collected from her door. A dustbin wagon did collect rubbish from the street - five days late - but Mrs Evans’ house was missed.

She is still waiting and says she has raised the alarm on a number of occasions.

“I’ve been ringing every day and I’m just fed up now,” Mrs Evans said.

“There are flies around all the rubbish. I think it’s terrible - to say for three weeks ‘it will be tomorrow’.

“I just want people to be honest, at least you know where you stand then.”

Residents of Burrwood Terrace, Holywell Green, are facing the same issue.

Antique dealer Chris Judd said: “We have not had a full collection since July 26.

“There are 10 houses on the street - the bins are in a compound and we have one each, but only one bin has been taken each time they have called since July 26.

“They are now all full, with the lids open, it’s beginning to smell and there has been rat problems before.

“I’ve complained about five times and they said they are having a lot of problems with new crews and new routes.

“Each time, they say that it will be done either today or tomorrow.

“It should not happen. If the truck comes round and does one bin, the rest should be done. It is sheer idiocy,” he added.

Councillor Barry Collins, Calderdale Council’s cabinet member for regeneration and economic development, said teething problems were anticipated, but slammed the number of missed collections as “unacceptable”.

He said: “Suez has committed to getting the service back to normal over the next two weekly delivery cycles. If that does not happen then under the agreed contract arrangements, Suez will incur financial penalties.”

Suez issued the following statement in response to the issues: “We know that a small number of properties in Calderdale are experiencing continued delays or difficulties with their household recycling and waste collections, following widespread changes that were introduced to the service last month.

“We apologise to the residents that have been inconvenienced by this and would like to assure them that resolving these issues is our top priority. We are working to an action plan to ensure that these service issues are resolved as quickly as possible and will be introducing new technology by the end of September to further help with collections, such as a system to remind collection crews of homes that need assisted collections.

“Reports of missed collections are being logged and investigated and, recently, collection crews worked throughout the Bank Holiday, and continue to work into the evenings, to clear waste and recycling from any missed properties. Affected properties are also being highlighted to our collection crews to ensure future scheduled collections are carried out as expected.

“While we appreciate the patience of some householders may now be wearing thin, we promise to resolve issues as soon as we can and apologise.”