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More than 11,000 have signed up for the £56 garden bin charge in Cheshire East so far

More than 11,000 people have so far signed up to Cheshire East’s subscription scheme to have their garden waste bins emptied from next year.

Of those, 9,500 have already paid the annual £56 charge, which has boosted the council’s coffers by £532,000.

Cllr Mick Warren (Ind), chair of the environment and communities committee, is pleased with the take-up.

“So far 11,387 people have subscribed to the scheme, which is encouraging because it has only been open a couple of weeks,” he said at the recent council meeting.

Cheshire East is hoping to rake in up to £4m a year by charging for garden waste collection.

People who don’t sign up will not have their garden bins emptied from January.

But many councillors and residents aren’t happy with the scheme – especially as the charge is higher than other nearby authorities.

Cheshire West & Chester, for example, charges £40; Warrington charges £43 – although that drops to £39 if residents subscribe online; Halton is £35 and Newcastle-under-Lyme £38.50. Stoke-on-Trent, only charges for garden waste collection through the winter and that costs £15. It is free during the summer.

Cllr Patrick Redstone (Odd Rode, Con) asked why a monthly service was not offered at a lower rate.

No-one at the meeting was able to respond to the question and he was told he would receive a written reply.

This week the council has emailed a response to councillors saying: “The authority has chosen to introduce the charge on existing bi-weekly collection frequencies to minimise disruption to collection rounds and customer collection days.

“This also ensures the service has been able to be introduced in a timely manner to meet the agreed MTFS budget requirements.

“We are unable to offer a varied collection frequency service to different households, such as a monthly option, due to the complexity this would add to the service collection administration.

“The vehicles travel a set route to ensure efficiency of the whole collection round, passing properties irrespective of how frequently the bin is presented.”


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