There’s frustration and anger from residents experiencing problems with Rother District Council’s refuse and recycling collection.
The council has admitted to teething troubles as the new system settles in - but there are continuing complaints of rotting rubbish, unemptied bins, and unsatisfactory response to queries.
Lynn Markwick emailed in a photograph of rubbish bags piled high at Yvonne Robertson House, the sheltered complex in Hastings Road, and complained it was left for three weeks before being cleared. She claimed the problem had to be referred to the Environmental Health Agency, adding: “It stinks so bad and it’s next to flats where elderly people are living.”
Ron Moore of Copse Road told of his frustration when his rubbish bin was not emptied from July 10 until July 29, with the refuse collection being missed on July 24. His phone calls to the council had little effect with various explanation being offered up, and he commented: “It is not good enough. At the end of the day we pay council tax for services which at the moment seem uncertain. We just want a service we can rely on.”
Brenda Laight, 74, lives in a block of flats on Brookfield Road, and claims rubbish has not been collected for two weeks now, and is started to pose a serious health risk, not to mention creating a stench.
She said: “It’s getting ridiculous now. I’m sorry, but I pay my rates and my council tax on time. It’s been two weeks, and now the council are telling us that they can only bring a small van round which means they run out of time and space quickly.
“Someone gets left all the time. It’s a really silly van to send out for about eighty flats. The rubbish is really beginning to smell now and this is becoming a serious problem.”
A RDC spokesman said: “We totally understand the frustration caused to residents by missed bin collections and would apologise for any inconvenience.
“We are still in the early stages of what has been a significant change, and there has been some disruption to service. However, we are working very closely with the contractor to understand and resolve these problems to ensure everyone gets collected on time. In advance of the change we took on and trained additional staff to be ready to respond to calls and emails and all our staff are working extremely hard, but residents should be aware that we are very busy. It is quicker for residents to register a missed bin on-line when our call centre is busy. We would encourage anyone who has a missed collection to leave their bin out and to report the missed collection by 5pm the next working day, online at www.rother.gov.uk”