City’s rubbish collection backlog ‘close to being cleared’

Rubbish pile in Brighton
Rubbish pile in Brighton

Backlogs of rubbish collections across Brighton and Hove should be cleared by next week, councillors were told on Tuesday.

The backlog had built up after a fire at the Hollingdean depot in August, with many areas suffering from missed collections and a build up of rubbish in the streets.

Conservative councillor Lee Wares told the council’s Environment, Transport and Sustainability Committee that collections had been missed for three weeks at Jasmine Court sheltered housing.

He said: “The crew turned up and said it was too dangerous to take.

“The residents said it was too dangerous to live with.

“They have lost hope that it would be possible to clear the backlog specifically within the next few weeks.

“Give us some hope the backlog can end in the near future.”

Cityclean boss Rachel Chasseaud told the committee at Hove Town Hall that the past five weeks had been hard.

Apart from the fire there had also been problems with vehicles as rubbish had become trapped under the compactors – and there had been unexpected levels of sickness and a shortage of drivers.

The fire meant that, until the depot had reopened, bin lorries were making three-hour round trips to Newhaven or queuing for an hour and a half at the tip in Hove.

As well as the 48 rounds carried out by Cityclean every day, refuse collection teams had three to four hours of collection time added on.

She said: “Progress has been significant. By this weekend we will have really caught up with the last areas.

“I expect by next week we will be back to normal. We will always get some missed collections but we will be back to normal level.

“We hope to see an improvement this week from last week.”