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Council to ease wheelie bin burden

PUBLISHED: 15:41 30 May 2008 | UPDATED: 11:10 03 July 2010

A NORFOLK council has offered to come to the rescue of an authority in the North-East - by snapping up part of its wheelie bin mountain.

Environmental services engineers at Broadland District Council have proposed the purchase of 3,000 unwanted bins from beleaguered Wear Valley District Council, in County Durham, which is currently wrestling with the embarrassment of having to store 15,000 of them on farmland at a monthly cost to taxpayers of £1,250.

A NORFOLK council has offered to come to the rescue of an authority in the North-East - by snapping up part of its wheelie bin mountain.

Environmental services engineers at Broadland District Council have proposed the purchase of 3,000 unwanted bins from beleaguered Wear Valley District Council, in County Durham, which is currently wrestling with the embarrassment of having to store 15,000 of them on farmland at a monthly cost to taxpayers of £1,250.

The bins, the first half of a £560,000 deal with Otto Environmental Systems, were bought ahead of a proposed switch from weekly to fortnightly rounds collecting waste one week and recyclables the next. But following a change in the political make-up of the council in last year's election, the plan was put on hold.

Ironically the wheelie bin mountain has been created at a time when there is a national shortage of bins.

A Broadland council spokesman described the proposed purchase as a “win-win” situation, buying bins at a good price for local taxpayers and helping another authority.

She said: “We are not going to take the entire wheelie bin mountain. We would not know what to do with 15,000 bins.

“But after reading about the problem we put in a phone call to the council to say if they had a surplus of bins we could take maybe two or three thousand of them.

“We need them to replace ones that break and because we have an expanding population.

“If they are sitting there doing nothing we'd be happy to take them.”

She said that 54,000 households in Broadland were already equipped with twin bins and many people had opted for a third, garden waste bin. And the council was experimenting with a fourth bin, for waste food.

“About one quarter of what people throw away is food waste and so far we have been saving 12.15 tonnes a week which otherwise would have gone into landfill,” she said.

Wear Valley council chief executive Gary Ridley said: “The council has been informally approached regarding the twin bins. Any decision regarding the future of the bins will be undertaken by the elected representatives of the council following a consideration of the available options.”


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