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Fortnightly rubbish collections - a recipe for less to be recycled?

I have just received a leaflet through my door about fortnightly rubbish collections. What it says is largely echoed on this Haringey changes to recycling service page. Given that I have spent considerable thought and money setting up my premises for the present arrangement I am hoping that I will not have to change my present arrangements too much. 

I have sent Veolia at the recommended email address enquiries.haringey@veolia.co.uk the following exploratory query:

Dear Sirs
I understand that you have surveyed my property (7 Fairfield Road, N8 9HG) in connection with the 240litre recycling bin. You will no doubt have observed that the space allocated to the current bin fits it exactly and that my property is therefore not suitable for a larger bin. Cllr Canver points out that the purpose of the larger bin is to enable me to recycle more - given that however large the bin is I will not have any more to recycle I have no need of a larger bin. I would therefore be happy to stick with the current black rubbish bin. Please therefore do not deliver a larger bin to my house.
I am disappointed to read that I can no longer use the boxes for recycling. I have adapted my habits very carefully to use these boxes to very good effect. I fear that if you change this mechanism I will find recycling more difficult and may be inclined to recycle nothing but simply to bin everything. Your proposed changes are therefore quite possibly counter productive in my case.
Please let me know what accommodation we can reach to address these problems.
Adrian Essex

Tags: Haringey, recycle, refuse, waste

Views: 522

Replies to This Discussion

A response to the Veolia recycling discussion has been posted on Facebook

    • Julia Richards 
      To be honest, without meaning to be rude, I am not sure what you are expecting as a response. They are no longer able to collect the green boxes as they have changed to a wheelie bin/lorry collection and would need to add on a special service to collect your green box. They can't really be expected to accomodate every individual's personal bin and storage arrangements and preferences. Thus we all need to have a green wheeliebin. I am a single adult with only two small children other than me at home, and manage to recycle the vast majority of my waste, the black wheelie bin is rarely more than half full even after a fortnight. Perhaps you could review how much you are recycling? 
      I am also not sure what you mean by delivering a bigger bin rather than keeping your current black bin. I don't think there is any intention to replace the black bin.
      My street changed over to the recycling wheelie bin system a few months ago, and although I certainly have issues with Vieola and the service they are providing, I find the system itself a vast improvement, there is much less mess on the ground from the green boxes during the week and much less mess at collection as they don't scatter about from the bins. I had 2 green boxes and they were always overflowing, the wheelie is just right.
      The green recycling wheelie is a positive step forward for increasing recylcing and reducing mess. I wonder if maybe you need to embrace the change and make your own accommodations rather than expect the council to.

Julia, thanks for your heartfelt response. 

I think you may have missed a few key points. 

1) the leaflet I have just received clearly says that if the bigger bin does not suit then to contact Veolia - which I have done

2) I have not rejected the changes - as I point out this is an exploratory email

3) an accommodation is by its very nature two sided - if Veolia's hint of possible alternative arrangements as mentioned in the leaflet is backed up by an offer of an actual alternative they and I might very well reach a satisfactory agreement

There are a few things I did not mention:

a) the disposition of my bin and boxes at the moment leaves them invisible from the street, (except for Thursday night/Friday morning) - I will not change this - I dislike the visual disfigurement caused to the streetscape by the very presence of bins and boxes, especially when they overflow/spill - it seems that you share this dislike

b) I believe that my current sorting of items to be disposed of is close to perfect - I do not put recyclable items in the landfill, nor landfill in the recycling boxes - the proposed change will not help me with this

c) what I would cheerfully embrace is an improvement - like many people I am resistant to change - I think I have carefully argued why this change does not represent an improvement in my case

Councillor Canver's assertion that "The introduction of a 240 litre wheelie bin so you can recycle more" - is nonsense on so many levels it should never have been published because:

i) surely we should all be trying to throw away less, whether recycling or landfill

ii) they could park a 10 cubic metre skip outside every house for recycling and I would still only have 1 newspaper every day, a few baked bean tins and some wine bottles 

You might feel differently if you were a family of 4. We have made more of an effort to recycle more now we have a bigger bin to put everything in to. The green boxes just contribute to more rubbish fluttering through the streets and deter from more recycling when they are full. I sympathise with you not wanting to change your current arrangement but the majority of us need to learn to recycle more and I believe this change will help.

I do now have the situation I was trying to avoid, i.e. two big bins - one black. the other with a green lid  currently lying on its side as far out of the way as I can get it. But I also have a job number for the replacement of these two big bins with two each half the size which should fit into the space of one, in due course. 

Assuming this does actually happen all sides should be happy.

Have you seen this picture/discussion published by Hugh on Harringay Online. I am not the only one who feels that turning every street into an annexe of the tip is not the ideal way to go.

If that's all you're recycling maybe you're not recycling enough.  I work in sustainability myself so I am very careful about what I consume and the packaging it comes in, but I still sometimes have plastic packaging such as yoghurt pots, junk mail (sometimes my two junk mail stickers are ignored), toilet roll inners, foil, egg cartons etc.

I work for a different council which has recent switched to one weekly rubbish collection from two.  I wish we would move to fortnightly as it might encourage people to recycle their food waste more.  They complain that the one weekly rubbish collection causes more smells - it wouldn't if they put their food waste in the lockable food waste bin provided.  Food waste causes a lot of methane emissions as it breaks down in landfill so this is actually a big issue.

I went to the Crouch End, Hornsey and Stroud Green Area Forum yesterday and Michael McNicholas of Haringey assured us that individual solutions to the bins issue are possible. My individual solution is still a work in progress. I have now sent this email

Dearest Helena

Thank you for your response and for sending an outreach officer to see me.
This was a little while ago and the agreement I reached with your outreach officer (he gave his name only as Ken) has not been implemented.
The agreement we came to was that my 240 litre black bin would be removed and replaced by a 120 litre black bin, and a 120 litre green lidded bin.
What has actually happened is that I have had delivered to me a 240 litre green lidded bin. I do not want this. I do not have space for this. It is unsightly and out of place in my front yard.
I have also had delivered to me a 120 litre green lidded bin. This was part of the deal.
I still have my 240 litre black bin, but no 120 litre black bin. I spoke to Joe this morning on a telephone number quite like the one you have quoted below - actually that one does not have enough digits. She said that she could not authorise a 120 litre black bin. Odd as I thought I already had this authority. 
Please can you make sure that the two big bins are removed and that I do get a small black bin.
I have copied Michael McNicholas in on this email as he spoke yesterday at an Area Forum to the effect that individual solutions are possible.
The relevant job numbers are
687063   remove green bin
687068   supply 120 litre bin

A reply , this time from Haringey

Dear Mr. Essex,


Thank you for your enquiry. There appears to have been some confusion over your bin requests so I have written to Veolia requesting the following:


  • Remove one 240 litre recycling wheelie bin
  • Remove one 240 litre refuse wheelie bin
  • Install one 120 litre refuse wheelie bin
  • The result should be that the resident has is one 120 litre refuse wheelie bin and one 120 litre recycling wheelie bin


I trust I have got this right but if not please let me know. These bin changes should be completed within 2 weeks but if that does not happen please let me know on 07976 457 417.




Michael McNicholas

Neighbourhood Action Team Manager


T: 020 8489 5655

As far as I am concerned this is now sorted out. Except I don't know which week the balck bin will be emptied.


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