Recycling finally collected after eight-week wait

Louise Turner with her full recycling boxes and bin
Louise Turner with her full recycling boxes and bin

A woman’s recycling has finally been picked up after two months with no collection – and more than a week after her plight hit the headlines.

Despite multiple complaints to City Clean via Brighton and Hove City Council’s website, the department’s Facebook page and Twitter account, Louise Turner’s recycling piled up.

It was last collected from her home in Larkfield Way on April 19. When it was missed two weeks later she made her first complaint, and her second when it was missed again a fortnight later.

When she contacted the press in early June, a council spokesman promised the cardboard, bottles and cans would be collected within 24 hours.

Nine days later it was still there, having been ignored once again by refuse and recycling workers.

Mrs Turner qualifies for an assisted collection as osteoporosis puts her at risk of a fracture. Her recycling bin and boxes are next to a low wall in front of her house.

She said: “It is not in a difficult place. They don’t have to take it back for me.”

The continued build-up leaves Mrs Turner frustrated and upset.

She said: “I’m quite distressed about my recycling situation because it is over eight weeks since it was collected.

“I’m repeatedly reporting it as missing.”

What she finds particularly frustrating is how her recycling is visible from the road but ignored.

Patcham and Hollingbury Conservative Councillor Lee Wares has multiple constituents experiencing similar problems, including people with missed assisted collections.

After hearing how Mrs Turner repeatedly reports the issue and was assured her recycling would be collected in 24 hours, he was astonished.

He said: “What is it that residents need to do for City Clean to respond to complaints?

“This is a basic service that the Labour administration are failing to deliver despite saying they’re going to deliver.”

He said one possible reason the recycling was not being picked up was because missed refuse collections across the city mean a lot of recycling is now being picked up by relief teams, who might not know Mrs Turner needed help.

After Mr Wares’ intervention, the recycling boxes were finally collected yesterday (Monday, June 18).

A Brighton and Hove City Council spokesman said: “We have visited Mrs Turner to remove her recycling and apologise for the problems she has experienced.

“We have re-instated her assisted collection request and are confident that there will be no further problems.”

Sarah Booker-Lewis is the Local Democracy Reporter for Brighton & Hove.

For more of her stories, click here.