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Concerns over 50% reduction in litter bins in York

Anne Reid

1:01pm 16th May 2012

Liberal Democrat Councillors in York have hit out at Labour’s plans to halve the number of litter bins in the city centre.

Under the plans, which were agreed at a meeting yesterday, Labour will remove 60 bins, replace another 40, and install 13 new larger solar-panelled bins with advertising space.

Overall this means the total number of bins will fall from 100 to just 53. The scheme will cost an initial £75,000 with the new ‘Big Belly’ bins costing nearly £4,000 each.

Cllr Ann Reid, Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Communities and Neighbourhoods, commented:

“We support the principle of reducing street clutter, but cutting the number of bins by 50% runs the risk of increasing litter and damaging the look and image of our City Centre. Although the 13 new bins will be bigger, my experience is that having more appropriately sized and conveniently located bins often works better than having fewer but larger bins. Fewer bins means we are relying on people walking further with their rubbish. Realistically, this doesn’t always happen. A trial of the new system in Acomb Front Street did lead to complaints from local residents about an increase in litter.

“The scheme will cost an initial £75,000 plus ongoing yearly maintenance costs for the new bins. The use of advertising on the bins was not spelt out in the report and it is unclear what the take-up will be. In the past conservation groups have objected to intrusive advertising on the side of bins as it was not in keeping with the Conservation area.

“I am also disappointed that Labour have not taken this opportunity to explore the inclusion of recycling facilities in the new bins. Extracting cans and bottles from litter bin waste will actually be harder in the new bigger bins because of the way the waste is compacted. Labour’s budget also included a £40,000 saving on litter bins but these proposals do not form part of those savings so many residents will wonder which other litter bins are likely to disappear under Labour’s cuts.”


Anne Reid

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