Gardening business offering brown bin inundated with calls after council stop picking up garden waste

C S Gardening and Landscaping set up the service after the brown bin service was stopped.

By Conor Matchett
Monday, 13th April 2020, 4:45 pm
C S Gardening and Landscaping is offering a brown bin pick-up service.

A gardener and landscaper has been inundated with calls after setting up a garden waste pick-up service to help Edinburgh residents who have no way of disposing of their garden waste.

Colin Spence, owner of C S Gardening and Landscaping, set up the service last week after Edinburgh City Council cancelled their brown bin pick-up service due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The council also shut their recycling centres, leaving Capital residents left with no way of disposing of garden waste other than composting.

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Mr Spence said the demand for his services had skyrocketed after he published a post on Facebook offering to pick up the rubbish for £4 a bin.

The 48-year-old then disposes it at the Forth Resource Management depot.

He told the Evening News: “It is absolutely bizarre and the phone just goes off 24/7 at the moment. I have lost count of the number of bins I’ve picked up, it must be in the thousands.

“I must get 80 calls a day and a couple of hundred voicemails and texts from people, it’s so much I can’t keep up with it.

“I’m doing it just to keep the business ticking over the best I can. I have got gardening maintenance to do but it doesn’t put food on your table and pay the bills.

“Normally I have a decent income but the restricted hours of places and no skip companies hiring out means I can’t do much landscaping.”

Mr Spence launched the service after the council stopped their own pay-for brown bin service, a decision that council leader Adam McVey said was made to ensure the safety of council staff.

Cllr McVey said: “It’s been extremely heartening to see Edinburgh’s residents playing their part in our response to this crisis by staying indoors and looking out for one another.

“Be assured that as soon as we can we will resume garden collections and reopen the community recycling centres. But for now, and we don’t yet know how long for, we’re asking you to help in our effort to keep residents and our waste staff safe. We really appreciate your patience while we’re not able to collect garden waste and glass recycling due to the changes we’ve had to make.”

He added that while it would be inevitable people gained more waste, it was important for them to not light bonfires to reduce the risk of fire and of causing pollution which could irritate the lungs of those isolating due to COVID-19.

Cllr McVey added: “We appreciate that while our garden waste collections have stopped to let us deliver other, essential services people will need to find ways of managing their excess garden waste where they don’t have means to home compost.

“But we are appealing to anyone carrying out gardening this weekend not to get rid of it by burning bonfires, as the smoke can pose a risk to people’s health, particularly the vulnerable and those with respiratory problems.

“By following our tips for composting garden waste, or hanging on to it until collections begin again, instead of burning it, you will be helping us to safeguard the health of people who live here, as well as reducing any impact on our emergency services.”

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