Residents ‘queue down high street’ to oppose bin collection changes

Labour campaign in West Street against bin collection change. A5vEPnSCKlGPF14hxCaI
Labour campaign in West Street against bin collection change. A5vEPnSCKlGPF14hxCaI

A petition calling for Tory councillors to ‘honour their promise’ and keep weekly bin collections in Horsham has reached 1,000 signatures.

In November last year Horsham District Council revealed it was planning to move to fortnightly collections of household waste from spring 2018.

The council claimed it would save £730,000 a year, while it would also help to improve its recycling rate from 45 to 50 per cent by 2020.

Many residents have been outraged by the decision and queued down the high street over the weekend to sign a petition opposing the changes.

The petition was set up by the Horsham Labour Party and calls for conservative councillors to ‘honour their manifesto commitment and continue weekly collections’.

It gained 700 signatures in the space of four hours and has also collect more than 350 signatures online.

Carol Hayton, a member of the Horsham Labour Party, said: “This has been the most enthusiastically supported petition we have experienced, with people queuing in West street to sign.

She said: “People are signing because they are angry at the councillors’ failure to properly consult on a change to their much publicised election pledge to maintain a weekly collection.

“Many people were unaware of the planned changes and annoyed that the council have not bothered to make this plan more widely known.

“They are fed up with paying council tax and yet having their views on what services that council tax should be spent on, ignored. Others wonder why the ongoing cuts to services are not matched with a cut in council tax.

“The councillors’ cavalier approach to making changes to key services without consultation has really annoyed people.”

She said the petition was not anti-environmental and those signing were keen for the council to make it easier to recycling.

“If the council is really keen to recycle they should extend the service, provide an information scheme and opportunities for people to submit their ideas and concerns before any change is finalised. Their failure to do so makes this look like just another plan to cut vital services,” she added.

HDC is also planning to bring in rear-loading bin lorries, which would save another £230,000 a year, and also increase green waste bin charges from April 2017.

At the time of the announcement Roy Cornell (Con, Roffey South), HDC’s cabinet member for waste, recycling, and cleansing, said: “We want to encourage more people to recycle whilst managing the unprecedented Government cuts to our budget. By moving to an alternative weekly collection system, we will save Horsham around £1m a year, and increase our recycling rate.”

The petition will now be put to the council.

To sign visit www.change.org/p/horsham-district-council-support-weekly-bin-collections-oppose-horsham-tory-plan-to-bin-weekly-collections

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