CROYDON COMMENTARY: #CroydonBinChaos, with the imposition of three times as many wheelie bins on households across the borough, is being hardest felt by those living in smaller homes, with small or no front garden space, and by the elderly who are forced to navigate around the bins which are now strewn across our pavements, as ARNO RABINOWITZ, pictured, explains
The whole bin saga is a terrible mess.
This ill-thought-through farrago shows how, as ever with our council, when it comes within sight of big bucks, commercial might prevails. This scheme may suit bins contractor Veolia, but it doesn’t help many residents. The council’s ruling cabal has ignored the feelings and views of residents and ploughed on with a policy that is clearly wrong in so many, so many ways.
The new bins have created a huge degree of urban blight and have disfigured the whole area where I live near the town centre.
The bins have been distributed willy-nilly, to maisonettes and flats, to some houses which have no storage space, and to others who can only store the new bins if people relinquish access to much of their driveways and garages. There are useless bins all over the place.
The wheelies are far too big for most houses. Most of us where I live will, at best, fill half a bin a week. That’s an appalling waste of money and scarce resources.
The bins’ use will not increase the amount of waste going to recycling, as the council has claimed. Most people already recycle as much as they can. A bigger bin is not going to make any difference.
Nor will having a bigger bin for recycling encourage those who don’t recycle to become compliant, as the council suggests. It is a bit like me putting a big sign in my garden saying “NO SLUGS ALLOWED” and, when that proves ineffective, replacing it with another sign, twice the size, and with the same wording.
The bins’ imposition without consultation may well be illegal as it impedes the proper and reasonable right of residents to enjoy their properties.
Property values could be affected.
It is abundantly clear that the “survey” which the council claims was conducted on every street in the borough before the decisions were reached on which roads could accommodate the bins and which roads could not was not carried out properly.
The council has admitted that the survey was not done, objectively, by the council itself, but that it was conducted by Veolia, who have a commercial interest in the roll-out of the bins to as many properties as possible, and that it was done from an office using Google Maps. It is little wonder that the outcome has been so unsatisfactory.
Much of the central areas of Croydon, such as Park Hill, consists of private estates where Google’s photography cars are denied entry. That may explain the crass inaccuracy of distribution.
The outcome is obvious everywhere: scores of bins where they cannot be accommodated, bins on pavements, bins all over the place. Bins delivered to some houses and not to others, exactly the same. It truly is #CroydonBinChaos.
When residents, like my neighbours and myself, try to contact the council for help and advice, we are given entirely contradictory accounts, depending if we manage to get through to the contact team at Bernard Wetherill House, or the waste services people at Stubbs Mead. The council’s left hand has little idea of what the right hand is doing.
Many, many local residents are very upset and angry at the dictatorial way this whole system is being forced upon them. There seems to be very little concern for the quality of life of citizens, only concern that a predetermined policy should be carried out – a typical inward-looking council action.
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