Call for bin collection calendars after Christmas confusion

Confusion: Penistone resident Dave Greenhough with Coun Hannah Kitching
Confusion: Penistone resident Dave Greenhough with Coun Hannah Kitching

Waste recycling bosses are to be asked to re-instate calendars spelling out dates for refuse collections in Barnsley following apparent confusion among some residents about when to put their bins out.

Barnsley Council historically issued a calendar to each household with dates for their different bins to be put out for collection, but they were scrapped as an economy measure as the authority worked to tackle austerity spending cuts.

Now the information is available digitally from the council’s website and is also publicised through social media such as Twitter.

But Penistone West Councillor Hannah Kitching said there had been confusion in her neighbourhood about collection dates – caused by the bank holidays falling midweek, affecting collection crews’ routine cycles.

She said she had seen problems on the streets and expressed through community Facebook groups which operate in the district.

Coun Kitching said: “Unlike in previous years and in other authority areas, residents this year have not received a printed hard copy of the bin collection calendar for their street.

“While this information is of course available online, many residents do not have either the technology, the skills or in some areas of my ward the broadband required to access this.

“So many people are relying on waiting to see which bin their neighbours put out.

"Penistone has Tuesday bin collections which this year fell on both Christmas Day and New Year's Day.

“Residents have been completely at a loss as to which bin is being emptied when. Using the Council's boroughwide online information relies on knowing when your usual bin collection should be - and it appears that many residents do not.

“Adding to the confusion has been a lack of consistency with the replacement collections - some on a Saturday, some on a Monday, some on a Thursday. I appreciate staffing and scheduling challenges over the Christmas period but these changes have been impossible for people to remember.

"I have seen long Facebook threads of arguments about what bin should go out when, with many residents resorting to putting out all their bins just in case.

“Even on New Year's Day morning my street was littered with grey bins,” she said.

The local Lib Dem party called last year for paper calendars to be re-instated in Barnsley and are now repeating that request.