COUNCILLORS in North Swindon have criticised the borough’s binmen for leaving the streets in a mess when collecting household waste.
At a recent meeting, members of the Haydon Wick Parish Council voiced their frustration at seeing the parish’s streets strewn with litter on bin day.
The parish council’s vice-chairman, Damon Bower, said: “The street collectors leave more waste when they are picking up the rubbish.
“Our amenities team have to follow the trucks and pick up what they leave behind.”
Coun Bower claimed that the parish’s litter pickers are always busiest immediately following kerbside collections.
David Robertson, the borough council’s waste and recycling service manager, attended the meeting and initially refuted councillors’ suggestions of shoddy work on the part of the binmen.
He said: “To be fair, there is a lot of litter there before we get there. It’s often already on the street.”
But Coun John Stooke immediately challenged his claim.
He said: “Generally speaking, it’s always left by your guys and we mustn’t deny the truth.
“The lads throw the boxes and the litter around and there are always plastic bottles and tins lying in the middle of the road.”
David then accepted that there are times when the borough’s binmen don’t always reach standards residents expect of them.
He said: “I recognise there are times when our guys don’t do the job properly, and that is a problem.
“When there are guys who are not doing it properly we bring it up with them.
“But I was impressed when I came to Swindon two years ago because I thought they were really good.
“These problems often come with kerbside recycling and the council has recently put a lot of investment into the waste service.”
The meeting comes after concerns that the parish will see an increase in fly tipping when the council cuts the opening hours of the Household Waste Recycling Centre in the Cheney Manor Industrial Estate in May.
A council spokesman said: “The council’s recycling teams are required to collect any litter caused by material they drop during the collections and we address any specific reports raised by the public.
“Householders are strongly encouraged to make sure they use the lids provided for boxes or secure material such as paper to prevent it from blowing about before the crews arrive.
“Replacement lids and boxes can be provided free of charge by calling 01793 445501.”