Take in your bins – or lose them

Residents in east Jesmond have been warned to take in their wheelie bins after waste collection, or risk losing them.

Newcastle City Council has issued a warning to homes on Devonshire Place, Cavendish Place, Queens Road, Queens Terrace, Grosvenor Road and Grosvenor Place after a complaint was lodged earlier this month regarding the number of bins left out on back streets for days after they’ve been emptied.

Council staff began putting warning stickers on offending bins on 15th February, and are currently removing damaged, duplicate and non-addressed bins from the area. Monitoring will take place on 19th and 26th February, and bins left out on Friday 5th March will be removed. Refuse collection for this area usually takes place on Wednesdays.

The council has warned that further monitoring will take place on 12th and 19th March, and any bins found in the street will again be removed.

The council’s website advises residents to put out their bins before 7am on collection day or late the previous evening, and take them back onto their property as soon as possible after collection. If this is not possible, residents are asked to contact Envirocall on 0191 274 4000.

The council charges up to £34 for replacement bins, and will not collect rubbish that isn’t in an approved container.

10 thoughts on “Take in your bins – or lose them”

  1. Sebastian Haff says:

    What a rubbish idea.

  2. Fiona Clarke says:

    It’s an empty threat. Every year the council says the same thing, but never does anything.

  3. Dan says:

    Now now Mr Haff, you ol’ rascal

  4. Cllr Stephen Psallidas says:

    Hi Fiona, are you the person who is a Labour Party activist and former Labour council candidate? If so, why not declare it in your posting, in the interests of political transparency?

    I can’t speak for the details of the Jesmond implementation, but I know in our nearby ward (Ouseburn Ward), there is considerable effort and action goes into this issue. A substantial number of duplicated and damaged bins are removed every year, to reduce the number of bins left out on a permanent basis. Also considerable effort is expended on an educational campaign to get residents to change their habits and bring their bins inside after collection. That is what residents, the police and the fire service tell us that they want.

    While it might not seem important, the issue is quite serious because if wheelies are left out all week, they (a) are used by burglars to climb back lane walls into back yards, (b) are used by burglars to store stolen property temporarily, (c) are burned out for ‘fun’ by arsonists, costing tens of thousands of pounds per year of fire service time in our ward alone, together with damage to residents’ walls etc, (d) obstruct refuse collection vehicles, emergency vehicles and residents’ own cars, (e) are more like to be knocked over and spill their contents, (f) look bad!

    In just one back lane in our ward Council officers have recently had 30 duplicated/unused bins taken away, and the education campaign has resulted in the number of bins permanently in that back lane falling by 95%.

    Unfortunately the Council’s legal powers in this matter are limited at present, we have asked the Government to beef up the relevant laws but they have not done so. So it is a constant battle to keep on top of the problem, with 30-40% of residents in some wards changing every year.

    Far from your throwaway (pun intended 🙂 ) remark that the Council “never does anything”, I think you will find that we are doing the best that we can with limited resources, to tackle this significant problem. Are soundbites more important than practical action?

    We are also grateful to several residents in our ward who are actively helping to spread the message to their streets and neighbours.

    Cllr Stephen Psallidas (Lib Dem – Ouseburn Ward)

  5. Dan says:

    Thanks for your comments Fiona and Stephen. This is definitely an important issue, and it’s certainly not confined to the streets mentioned above. We’ll keep an eye on what happens throughout this month, and post an update.

  6. Don Perry says:

    I agree with Fiona’s comment.

    “It’s an empty threat. Every year the council says the same thing, but never does anything”.

    As for Cllr Stephen Psallidis’s comment

    “Hi Fiona, are you the person who is a Labour Party activist and former Labour council candidate? If so, why not declare it in your posting, in the interests of political transparency?”

    Was He trying to score political points?.

  7. Fiona Clarke says:

    Hi Stephen, Don and Dan,

    Look down any Jesmond backlane and you will see rows of bins, not one taken in. Ever since wheelie bins were introduced they have dominated the backlanes, whichever party was in control. Each administration has promised to crack down, but none of them have.

    The Lib Dems came to power in Jesmond on a promise to gate the back lanes and turn them into safe, private, environmentally friendly zones. This turned out to be another empty promise.

    When I was growing up in Jesmond the backlanes were our playground (except on washing day!). I could reminisce about the many uses of a backlane, but now they are just an eyesore.

    I wonder why a councillor for a different ward had to try to defend the Jesmond record.


  8. Alex Jones says:

    Although this “issue” is not exclusively relevant to students, knowing the majority of students move residence on a annual basis I guess they won’t care too much if their bin is taken away – as the picture shows there are usually plenty of other bins to choose from!

    Given the cuts that Newcastle City Council will bring in (as will all local authorities) I’d be much happier knowing that energies and resources were being put into ensuring rubbish collections remain a regular occurance and not waste additional resources in monitoring who isn’t taking them away.

  9. Don Perry says:

    It is not only the residents of Jesmond that are failing to take in their bin(s) after they have been emptied the occupiers of the retail and commercial premises are just as bad. In the back lane of St Georges Terrace, between Thornleigh Road, and Coniston Road, there are seven 4 wheeled commercial bins and five smaller ones are left out in the back lane on a permanent basis. Not only does it look unsightly, these bins are occupying car parking spaces that the same retailers had fought for, as their customers had nowhere to park.

  10. Dennis Barker says:

    Ive lived in jesmond for five years and the bins have always been in the back lane.I ve seen people rummaging for useful stuff on a number of occasions.

    Our bin went missing about four and a half years ago at which point I did what most people would do and just started using the nearest empty bin.

    Everyone else seems to do the same and the informal arrangement works well.

    Why change something that is working?

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