Payable garden waste collection

Payable garden Waste collection: frequently asked questions

Why are we charging for the collection of garden waste?

The collection of garden waste is a discretionary service, not a statutory service – i.e. one that the council is not obliged to provide. In light of the council's overall financial position we had the choice to charge for the service or possibly discontinue it completely. We felt that it would be fairer for residents to have the choice to pay for a service or not, rather than not having a service at all. We are not allowed to charge for the collection of domestic waste (i.e. the green bin) under the Environmental Protection Act 1990. There are also limits to how much the Council Tax can be increased and it was felt it would be fairer to charge only those residents that use the service.


How much does it cost?

It's £36 for 12 months for the first licence if you sign up by 28 February 2022. Subscription licences will run for a fixed year from 1 March 2022 to 28 February 2023. If you sign up from 1 March 2022 the licence will cost £40 and run until 28 February 2023. 


Can I have more than one subscription?

Yes. Each additional bin subscription will cost £30 per fixed year.


Do I need to sign up for the service each year?

Yes. You will be sent a reminder prior to your subscription end date.


Is this charge compulsory?

No. The service will only be available to residents that register for the service. If you do not register and make the payment, your brown bin will not be emptied and there will be no charge to you. If you do not have a garden or do not want to pay for the collections, you do not need to do anything.


Will this encourage more fly-tipping?

We have conducted benchmarking with other councils which charge for the collection of garden waste. This has shown that there is not a significant increase in fly-tipping when charges are introduced. Any fly-tipping that occurs will be dealt with as per our current arrangements. Fly-tipping is a crime, any person found guilty of fly-tipping will be dealt with, in line with our Environmental Enforcement Policy.


Will you take my brown bin away if I am not paying for the service?

We can arrange to collect your brown bin if you decide not to sign up to have your bin emptied. However, we will not be collecting these until June 2022, so you will have a few months to decide whether or not you want to use this service. 

If you still would like your brown bin(s) to be removed after this date please contact us:

Bin removal

If any bins that we remove are still in good condition, we reuse them. Any bins that are not in good condition or working order, are collected and recycled into plastic pellets and used again to make new bins.


Can I put garden waste in my green rubbish bin?

If you don’t want to sign up for the garden waste subscription service, you can home compost or dispose of your garden waste at the household waste recycling centres at Alkerton or Ardley.


Can I put garden waste in my blue recycling bin?

No. If there is garden waste in your blue bin, it will not be emptied. The recycling in the blue bin is sorted at a materials recycling facility where they cannot accept garden waste. The collection crews will be monitoring bins and a thorough check will be made if evidence shows previous contamination.


Can I pay monthly or pay for a one-off collection?

No. Licences will run for a fixed year from 1 March to last day of February fallowing year. You pay the charge once a year irrespective of when you purchase your subscription licence. We won’t be providing one-off collections as part of this service but you could hire our garden excess service bin(s).


Can I put additional bags at the side of the bin?

No. The charge is per brown bin and only bins showing the official subscription licence label will be emptied. Residents can purchase as many subscription licences as they want for their property.


What if I lose or damage my bin?

The brown bin will be replaced free of charge and a replacement subscription licence label will be supplied once we confirm you have purchased one for your property.


What happens if I damage or lose my subscription licence label?

You can request a replacement. You may be asked to provide evidence of the damaged subscription licence label.


What happens if I don’t receive my subscription licence label?

When you have paid for your subscription licence, the details will be sent to your address in a welcome pack. This can take up to ten working days from 14 February 2022. If you haven’t received it after this time, please contact us.


Can I share a bin with my neighbours?

Yes. This will be a private arrangement between residents. The collection crews will only collect brown bins displaying a valid subscription licence label from the household at which it is registered.


Will the garden waste collection be carried out all-year round?

Yes. There may be occasions due to exceptionally inclement weather, bank holidays etc. when the collections will be suspended. Full details will be provided on the council website if there are any interruptions to the service. No refunds will be given for unexpected disruptions to the service.


What if I move to a new house?

All subscriptions stay with the property and there will be no refunds. If you are moving to another house within the district, you will need to purchase a new subscription licence at your new address.


What if other residents use my bin?

You are responsible for keeping your brown bin secure to ensure other residents cannot put items into it.


I have a smaller brown bin, will it cost the same as a larger brown bin?

We have two different size brown bins (240 litre and 140 litre).  The charge is the same for both sizes. Residents with a smaller 140 litre bin will be able to exchange it for a larger 240 litre bin on request, at no cost when they subscribe to the service.


What if my subscription licence label is stolen?

The collection crews will also have a full list of properties who have paid the subscription and any property found to be using a licence fraudulently will have their bin removed.


What if my bin is missed?

Your brown bin(s) needs to be on the boundary of the property by 7am on the scheduled collection day. If the collection is missed, we will return to empty the bin in line with our current arrangements. In exceptionally inclement weather, the contents of the bin may freeze and it may not be possible to empty the bin. In these cases, we will not return until the next scheduled collection day.


Are there any concessions for the garden waste service?

No. The price is the same for everyone’s first licence.


Can I subscribe to the service if I move into the area?

You can subscribe to the service at any time throughout the year.


I have an assisted collection service, will it still continue?

Yes, provided you subscribe to the garden waste collection service and are currently registered for assisted collection.


What about recycling rates?

At present, the residents of the district have achieved very good recycling rates. Our current recycling rate of 55% ranks the district in the top 25% of the 340 local authorities in England. At the moment, up to a third of the waste currently going into residents’ green bins is recyclable and should be disposed of either in the blue bin or via the food waste service. With this change, we can become one of the top recycling districts in the UK.


Can I have a larger or more than one garden waste bin?  

Regardless of the size of any household (or garden), there is no alternative sized bin provision. Residents who have larger gardens may subscribe to receive several wheelie bins. There are no limits on number of subscriptions.


Will the council clean my bin for the subscription price?

No. The customer is responsible for maintaining the cleanliness of the bin.


How many collections will I receive for my annual subscription?

Payment does not guarantee you a specific number of collections.


How can I cancel the service?

Please contact us, then we will remove the bin in 10 working days from the termination of the subscription. You will still be charged for the year you have subscribed for.


Can flats sign up for the service?

Please discuss this with your managing agent or landlord and ask them to contact us to make the arrangements. 


Can I have a locked bin?

No. The bin will be your responsibility. Please make sure it is kept in a secure location.


What happens with my garden waste?

The garden waste is processed to make a low grade compost.


What if my garden waste is contaminated?

If your garden waste is contaminated, then we won't be able to empty your bin. You will be asked to remove the contamination, then the bin will be emptied on the next collection date.


Subscription(s) for community halls and places of religious worship?

Please contact us for more information.


What will happen to my food waste?

Please visit our webpage for further information.