Bexhill man’s protest over “atrocious” bin collection

mick matthews protest against rubbish bin collection
mick matthews protest against rubbish bin collection

A Bexhill man was so angered by his rubbish collection service that he dumped his bin bags on the steps of the town hall in protest.

Mick Matthews, of Dallington Close in Pebsham, feels he has been treated by Rother District Council “like a piece of dirt” having complained for weeks with no result.

His problem is that every week his bin is not returned to his house but left at the end of the cul-de-sac.

In the last few years he claims he has lost three bins as a result and these take weeks to replace - in the meantime the refuse collectors will not take black rubbish bags away, and there is then a problem with attracting vermin such as rats.

Mick is also frustrated that if a bin led is not closed it will not be taken away, or if a rubbish bag is left on top, and feels the service is hampered by rules and conditions.

He says he has made repeated calls to the council with no result even though he’s always promised that the issue will be dealt with. On one of his attempts recently he got through to the relevant department and then heard the staff member ridiculing him to colleagues.

By Thursday evening last week he’d had enough and took his rubbish to the town hall with a protest placard and left it there at 7pm.

It was removed within an hour and a half.

Mick said: “I genuinely feel sorry because I know the dustbin men work very hard.

“But I believe they haven’t got good management behind to help them. I keep complaining but it is falling on deaf ears. The service is absolutely atrocious. I was always brought up to believe that if you do a job right the first time you will never have a problem after that.

“My message to the council is do the job you are paid to do.

“I am actually gobsmacked by all this. You ring up and they say it will be done - but it’s not. I complained week after week after week and each time they promise it will be done.”

He added: “This isn’t over by far.”

A Rother District Council spokesman said: “We are aware of the concerns Mr Matthews has raised and the difficulty he and his neighbours have experienced with their bin collections.

“We have formally raised the matter with our contractor and have reminded them that bins must be returned to the edge of the customer’s property.

“We’re sorry if Mr Matthews experienced trouble getting through to us on the phone. We have been experiencing a high volume of calls, particularly relating to the roll-out of the new garden waste service, and we are doing our best to deal with every enquiry as quickly as possible. Our email address is available for residents who are having difficulty getting through.

“Waste left on top of or beside bins hasn’t been collected since the introduction of wheeled bins in 2007.”