Fortnightly collections row: ‘If this rubbish isn’t cleared we’ll dump it on council’

Paul Simpson with the unemptied bins. Picture: Kate Chandler
Paul Simpson with the unemptied bins. Picture: Kate Chandler
0
Have your say

FURIOUS residents, whose bins have gone unemptied for almost three weeks, have vowed to dump a carload of rubbish on the council’s own doorstep as complaints about collections mount across the city.

Paul Simpson, 31, and his neighbours fear their flats will be overrun with vermin. They said they would pack bin bags and deposit them today at the council’s Chesser House offices after repeated requests for collection went unanswered.

It comes as it emerged that one in ten bins across the city – around 7500 – have not been collected on time following the controversial move to reduce collections to just once a fortnight.

Mr Simpson said the bins outside his Granton Harbour home had now become a “haven for 
vermin”.

He said: “It’s ridiculous. We pay £170 a month in council tax and after numerous phone calls and repeated promises of emergency pick-ups the council still haven’t collected our rubbish.

“The bins are now overflowing and becoming a real health issue, it’s a haven for vermin.

“If the council don’t come out and pick it up I’m going to fill my car and dump it outside Chesser House – let’s see how they like it.”

Mr Simpson, who works as an undertaker, said his bins should have been emptied under the new arrangements on September 3.

Councillors have said they have been inundated with complaints over fortnightly collections with Murrayfield, Granton and Slateford Road thought to be among the worst affected.

Mary Wright, who lives near Slateford Road said: “Our recycling bins have not been emptied since August, there has been at least six phone calls from myself and my neighbour.

“At this moment it is an eye sore with so much lying at the side of the bins.”

It is understood that a change in bin men’s shift patterns since the new collection schedule was introduced may account for some streets being missed out entirely.

The council said extra resources had been deployed to cope with the significant changes to refuse collections and that 90 per cent of bins had been emptied on time.

Councillor Joanna Mowat, who represents the city centre, said she had received many phone calls from disgruntled residents who have been left with overflowing bins for weeks on end.

She added that while the new system needed time to bed in she had not expected quite so many complications.

“My colleagues and I have received several complaints of streets and homes being missed by rubbish collections,” she said. “It is hugely disappointing that the switch to fortnightly collections which has been planned for some time has been handled so badly.

“It is understandable that there would be some teething problems but not on this scale.

“I’ve been told that a change in bin men’s shift patterns might have resulted in bins not being collecting due to their being unfamiliar with the route. Is it that difficult to 
supply bin men with a map of the routes they are supposed to be collecting along?

“Questions need to be answered on this.”

david.oleary@edinburghnews.com