Green bin collections update

Last Updated: 7 May 2021

23 March 2021

We are recruiting additional temporary staff and will be gradually re-introducing fortnightly collections as staffing allows, which means that during April some areas will start to see green bins collected every two weeks. From 3 May we will be re-introducing full fortnightly green bin collections.

Fortnightly collections won’t be possible across all areas straight away in April as new staff are trained and become familiar with the rounds, but by 3 May we are confident that we will be back to a full fortnightly service as per your collection calendar.

Green bin collections re-started following the usual winter suspension on 1 March but during March green waste has only been a monthly collection, with our crews aiming to make one collection per household during the month.

This has been due to ongoing staffing pressures caused by Covid, with a number of depot staff either suffering with Covid symptoms or required to shield or self-isolate.

Residents should continue to follow these steps until 3 May:

  • leave your green bin out on your next scheduled collection day
  • collection crews will begin emptying green bins on the round on the scheduled collection day. As staffing levels improve in some areas it will be possible that all green bins will be picked up
  • if your bin has not been emptied by the end of the scheduled collection day please take your bin back in and present it again on the next scheduled green bin collection day according to your calendar, when the crews will return to continue the rest of the round.
    The intention is that every household will have received at least one collection of green waste during April, with some areas returning to fortnightly collections

From 3 May the council is confident staffing levels will be sufficient for the usual fortnightly green waste collection to resume.

The council wishes to thank residents for their patience during the phased reintroduction of the green bin collections.

SLDC waste and recycling service information

The council has certain statutory waste and recycling collections that it must provide by law. As well the residual waste (grey bin) collections we are also legally obliged to collect ‘dry’ recyclables from the kerbside. SLDC collects five dry recyclables, collecting paper, card, plastic, cans and glass. It is these collections that we have to provide for your Council Tax.

During the pandemic SLDC has always protected these statutory collections as the priority and has maintained its grey bin and dry recyclable collections throughout the past year.

Alongside these statutory grey waste and dry recyclables, SLDC also provides an additional fortnightly green waste collection. Green waste collections are not a statutory function, but collections are offered as a complimentary service as part of SLDC’s expanded recycling offer.

Unlike more than 50% of other councils nationally, SLDC does not impose a separate charge for green waste collection. Authorities that do levy a separate fee typically charge around £40 per year for green waste collections.

From the annual Council Tax paid by each household roughly 10% comes to SLDC to deliver a range of services – from planning and licensing to environmental protection, maintaining parks and playgrounds and delivering the waste and recycling collection service.

That means if your total annual Council Tax bill is £2,500, for example, SLDC would typically get around £250 of that amount each year. The remaining £2,250 going to Cumbria County Council (for highways, schools, social services etc), the police and your local parish council.

From that 10% of your Council Tax that comes to SLDC approximately £70 per household, per year, goes towards providing the waste and recycling service, or around £2.70 per fortnight. The council make three visits in a typical fortnight to collect the grey bin, blue recycling boxes and recycling bag and green bin, so that breaks down to 90p per collection visit.

SLDC collects from more than 50,000 households across the district, or nearly 4 million collections per year, and averages 99.98% of waste and recycling collections on the scheduled collection day.