Dismay as recycling service is suspended

Low Moor residents who are not happy about the suspension of the recycling service in their area. (s)
Low Moor residents who are not happy about the suspension of the recycling service in their area. (s)
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A rally call has been made for a smaller refuse vehicle to collect waste from some of the Ribble Valley’s more narrow streets after the suspension of the borough council’s recycling service to one part of Clitheroe.

Ribble Valley Borough Council has withdrawn its normal recycling service using a 26 tonne vehicle to residents living at the back of St Paul’s Street in Low Moor.

And Coun. Ian Brown and Coun. Sue Hind are now urging the borough council to acquire a medium-sized dual stream vehicle capable of recycling so that normal service can resume.

Coun. Hind said: “The reason given by council officials for the withdrawal of the service was that the access was difficult and dangerous at the end of Back St Paul’s Street. Instead, refuse from the houses in this area is now collected by a much smaller vehicle, which has only one compartment and can only accommodate one waste stream - hence the refuse from St Paul’s Street and Queen’s Street is no longer recyclable.”

She added: “The residents are deeply disappointed that their refuse is not able to be recycled as it does not reflect the ethos of Ribble Valley Borough

Council or their own strongly held beliefs about the future of this planet.”

Couns Brown and Coun. Hind are pictured discussing the issue with some of the local residents. One of the residents, Jason Greenwood, can be seen holding up page 11 of last week’s Clitheroe Advertiser which ran a story with the headline: “Lancashire leads the way with household recycling”.

The councillors are now lobbying the borough council to buy a smaller dual stream collection vehicle.

Coun. Brown said: “Low Moor’s narrow streets must not be the only ones in the Ribble Valley finding it difficult to accommodate the huge 26 tonne refuse vehicle; our many terraced narrow streets would justify the cost.”

A spokesperson for RVBC said the council was doing all it can to resolve the issue: “Some weeks ago, it became apparent that the state

of an unadopted back street behind St Paul’s Street was causing a dangerous situation to develop.

“Because the council always treats public safety as its highest priority, the service to the properties on St Paul’s Street and Queen’s Street is now provided by a smaller vehicle. This meant that the back-door recycling service had to be suspended.

“The refuse and recycling service has been developed over many years to deliver efficient and convenient collections to all the 26,200 properties across the borough. In some cases this is not possible, so the council tries to find an alternative. In many streets in Clitheroe, Longridge and Whalley, for example, householders bring their bins to a collection point that is accessible for the vehicle. Unfortunately, this was not a practical option in this case because of the distances involved.

“The council is always keen to support residents who we know want to recycle. Currently, less than 3.5% of households don’t receive a recycling

service and we are constantly seeking to reduce that number where possible.

“For the households affected by this recent change, who are willing to use ‘bring’ sites in order to carry on recycling, we can supply on request recycling bags that can be carried in a car boot. We know that a number of those families affected have taken up this offer already.

“Looking forward, though, we are in discussions with the utility companies and landowners that may be involved and if we can find a way to make the manoeuvre safe again, there’s no reason why we can’t resume the service as it was.

“Councillors have made it clear that this is their preferred outcome. We will certainly keep under review the suitability of replacement plant and vehicles in order to balance the competing demands that the council faces.”