Can you believe that Calderdale Council are planning to introduce wheelie bins into Hebden Bridge and Todmorden? Its so crazy and stupid that its hard to get your head round it. I can't wait for my wheelie bins, which will have to be parked on the pavement outside my house, being pushed onto the road when mothers with children can't get past.
I think its time to let Calderdale Councillors know that this apparent money-saving venture is silly. Can you imagine wheelie bins being jettisoned down Keighley Road etc.?
Posted by Diana Monahan
Calderdale Council Cabinet will be making a decision on 28th January 2008 (meeting starts at 4pm in Halifax Town Hall) which will determine whether we are to get wheeled bins (2 each + small kitchen compost bin).
I think that for some houses, wheeled bins will be a disaster. There is still a possibility that we can have a bag collection in some areas, but I think we need to make our feelings known on this matter by writing to cabinet members and our local representatives so we get the choice.
Calderdale seem to think that having wheelie bins will make us recycle more, but I am not sure why they think this. Here are some of my concerns and questions.
1. I have seen lovely little villages with beautiful old buildings, and even some towns, where the picturesqueness was completely spoilt by the presence of several wheeled bins on their frontages. It was not a case of the wheeled bins being put out for collection day, they were there because there was nowhere else for the householder to put them. They completely dominated the landscape in my opinion. I feel that much of our area, which includes a Conservation Area, would be spoilt in a similar way as we have many houses where there is little or no frontage. In some cases there is no back area to put bins. e.g. top and bottom houses or terraces straight onto the streets, main roads, flights of steps or steep paths. Many of us have no gardens. Many of our terraces already have bins and kerbside boxes outside their houses, but at least they are smaller and less numerous than wheeled bins. Others keep a bag inside their houses until collection day.
2. My terrace has a small common yard where we can fit all our dustbins and communal kerbside boxes for the whole row. Wheeled bins probably wouldn't fit through the little gate and there would not be room for all the bins.
3. Our bins are all metal as we found animals ate through plastic ones. How animal-proof are wheeled bins? Our houses are too small to keep bins in the house, although I manage to have a small compost bin in the kitchen and, when it is full, I take it to a garden for composting.
4. In Birmingham I have seen the wheeled bins put out on the pavement on collection day and, as well as been unsightly, I think they are a hazard for people with poor eyesight, or using wheelchairs, or children's prams/buggies. This would be a particular problem in Hebden Bridge as many pavements are narrow.
5. If people are away, the bin is either not left out or not put away. This advertises the householder's absence to would-be thieves.
6. What happens if a householder is too frail or disabled to move wheelie bins around? In the consultation it said there would be an assistance scheme, but one needs to be careful that this type of householder cannot easily be identified by unscrupulous people who may then target them.
7. What happens to people who have senile dementia and cannot always cope with the idea of two different bins and putting them out on specific dates?
8. If the council does go to a wheeled bin system, who is taking the responsibility and meeting the costs for the disposal of the current 90,000 bins? What a waste!
I read the Waste Strategy consulation document (161 pages) and sent in a response in 2006. Here is the link to the results of the Calderdale-wide survey, but there is no break down of answers into the type of property owned. I would like to know if the survey results were looked at in terms of the type of property that people lived in. Were all those in favour of wheeled bins mainly households with gardens?
Posted by Janet Oosthuysen
I went to the committee meeting where the proposals were discussed, on behalf of some Tod residents who are taking part in a trial food waste recycling scheme; they don’t want it to stop as it's been tremendously successful.
The situation is as follows: the Health and Social Care Committee has recommended to the council that they opt for the 2 wheelie bin solution, and this will be decided at a meeting on 30th January. One bin would be for recyclables and the other for residual waste. They would be collected on alternate weeks. It is already recognised that, with Calderdale the place it is, only 75% of households are suitable for wheelie bins. The remainder will continue to use black bin bags and boxes, but with the same collections.
On top of this there is a proposal - supported by many of those who have taken part in the trial - of a weekly food waste collection. The committee voted to consult residents on this. As you can see from the link in Diana’s post, there has already been some consultation – via the Calderdale Citizens’ Panel - on the overall options.
I know we all want to reduce, reuse and recycle. This scheme will be an incentive for us all to do it. We must remember wheelie bins are both impractical and inappropriate for many houses in Hebden Bridge, and we won’t all be using them.
The new scheme will also allow the recycling of some plastics, and should get people recycling more. Studies have shown that kerbside schemes are by far the best in terms of the amount recycled and energy efficiency.
Hebden has shown itself a leader where plastic bags are concerned and, provided the council uses common sense and sensitivity in implementing the changes, we can make this work here too provided we have a weekly collection of food waste.
Central government demands, quite rightly, that the volume of waste going to landfill is reduced, and councils face stringent fines if they fail to act on this. We do not want Calderdale to be in this position – we do not want to suffer cuts in services.
I therefore have qualified support for the scheme. I do not want to see two wheelie bins per house blocking the pavements down Keighley Road – nor are they practical for the under and overdwellings around Hebden. We also need to ensure that proper provision is made for the old and infirm. But I welcome the chance to do something that will get us recycling more.
Posted by Christine P
Not sure how wheelie bins could be used in Fairfield. All the houses have steps due to the houses being lower than the road.
I live in a maisonnette, I don't fancy having to walk along the balcony, down a flight of steps, up a flight of steps and down the slope to the car park.
I also imagine if all the wheelie bins are on the car park there will people who use anyone's bin. I have a feeling Wheelie bins will not be viable in a lot of Hebden Bridge.
Maybe I will be proved wrong.
Posted by Lou
We visited Haworth yesterday and we were amazed that wheelie bins have been introduced there - they just looked so unsightly!
Posted by Janet Oosthuysen
I've been talking to the officers involved and they say that despite the decision by the council to impose wheelie bins throughout Calderdale, 25% of houses won't be able to have one for health and safety issues both of the residents and the workers involved.
I have a feeling that many of those will be in Hebden.... or they will find piles of them collecting at the bottom of all the hills! And with so many houses having steps to their doors it'll be impossible to impose them. Older people will have dispensation anyway and not have to move them, according to their FAQ on the council website.
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