Saturday, 23 January 2021

Streets strewn with rubbish as overflowing bins are unemptied

Streets strewn with rubbish as overflowing bins are unemptied

THE streets of Henley were strewn with rubbish on Monday after the public bins had not been emptied over the weekend.

Bins in the town centre had been filled up during Saturday and Sunday and by Monday morning they were overflowing and waste was being blown across pavements and into the road.

The main tourist and visitor areas of Market Place, Hart Street, Friday Street, Duke Street and Reading Road were the worst affected areas. 

Takeaway coffee cups, fizzy drinks cans and food containers were sticking out placed on top and around the bins while cigarette butts and chewing gum also littered the pavement.

Household waste was also dumped in bags beside the bins and at the end of streets. A discarded coffee cup, cigarette butts and a box of half a dozen eggs, with two missing, was thrown into a planter in Duke Street.

Waste contractor Biffa has a contract with South Oxfordshire District Council, the waste authority, to regularly empty the bins.

Town councillor David Eggleton, who is chairman of Henley in Bloom, said he was “disappointed” that the bins had not been emptied and said this was down to a rubbish collector being unwell.   

He said: “I have been out since 7am today (Monday) and the bins were heavy with rubbish and every bin was overflowing.

“There is normally someone on at the weekends who empties the bins but from what I know, there was no one out because the person down to do it was ill.

“These things do happen but work shouldn’t come to a grinding halt just because someone is ill. There should be a procedure in place where someone else is called in to do the work.

“Or, if that’s not possible, Biffa should have sent two people to the town on Monday to get it all sorted. As it is, the one contractor working today would do well to clear the entire town in a day.”

He added: “I am a bit disappointed but it would be a lot worse in summer time with all the events we have on and with more people out, but this shouldn’t happen any time of year. It’s something that should be done for the businesses and also for the people who live here.”       

Sheridan Jacklin-Edward, Henley town clerk, said: “This council puts so much work into other areas such as hanging baskets and bunting and we want to work with Biffa and the district council in making the town as good as possible.”

A spokeswoman for South Oxfordshire District Council said: "We apologise for the overflowing bins in Henley town centre during last weekend. 

"Unfortunately, the person due to empty the bins was unwell and neglected to inform his supervisor.  As soon as Biffa were made aware of the situation, they sent a team to empty them."

Last week, the Henley Standard reported that a bin on the corner of Reading Road and Upton Close, which regularly overflows, is to be replaced.

The town council’s town and community committee agreed to remove it and install a new covered bin next to the bus stop in Reading Road near Jewson. Councillors believe this may prevent litter ending up in the hedge.

For the full story and more pictures, pick up a copy of this week’s Henley Standard, out on Friday.

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