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Sign up for garden waste collection – now!

Posted by Suffolk Coastal District Council on 9 March 2018 | Comments

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Suffolk Coastal residents can now sign up to the new Garden Waste Collection Scheme.

Suffolk Coastal District Council is introducing a £43 a year charge for collecting garden waste this financial year (2018/19).

The scheme is optional, with the first paid-for collections scheduled to start from the beginning of May 2018.

It’s quick and easy to sign up, either:

  • Go to my.eastsuffolk.gov.uk/MyServices.  You will need to register, or login to, your 'My Eastsuffolk' account and then complete the form for garden waste
  • Call Customer Services on 01394 383789, and choosing option ‘0’.
  • Or, pop in to see our Customer Service staff in the Customer Service Centre in Felixstowe and Woodbridge Libraries.

You will need a debit or credit card to pay. The fee for one bin is £43 for a year (the equivalent of paying about £1.65 per fortnightly collection). You can place your order now and don’t forget to say ‘YES’ to the upgrade.

Cllr Carol Poulter, Suffolk Coastal’s Cabinet Member with responsibility for the Green Environment explained:

“Although the new paid-for Garden Waste Scheme doesn’t start until May, we are urging people to sign up now to avoid a last minute rush to join,” 

“This is a completely voluntary scheme, but people have to opt into the scheme and pay the annual fee. This will not happen automatically. Basically, if you have not joined the scheme by the beginning of May, your garden waste will not be collected by us.”

“People will obviously be able to join later in the year but, the best way to make sure there is no gap in the service, is to join up now and your membership will run from this May to 30 April 2019.” 

One of the key benefits from joining the Suffolk Coastal Garden Waste Scheme is that subscribers will also be given the option of receiving a free, larger (240 litre) green bin for their garden waste (240 litres is the most common wheeled bin size, but the current brown organic waste bins in Suffolk Coastal are 140 litres).

The new, larger green bins are expected to be delivered during the autumn (2018) to those residents who request one and have subscribed to the garden waste service.

At this stage, subscribers to the Garden Waste Collection Scheme will be able to continue to put organic domestic waste (such as food waste) in with their garden waste.

Suffolk Coastal currently collects about 50,000 tonnes of domestic household waste a year. About one third of this (about 15,000 tonnes) is organic waste. This is co-mingled garden (estimated 13,000 tonnes) and food (estimated 2,000 tonnes) waste.

The remaining waste is made up of general ‘residual’ waste at 22,000 tonnes (44%) and dry recycling at about 13,000 tonnes (26%).

The co-mingled organic waste (food waste collected together with garden waste) collected by Suffolk Coastal Norse for Suffolk Coastal is currently processed into an agricultural soil improver at an in-vessel (IVC) composting facility at Parham.

This organic waste processing contract ends on 31th March 2019, so a new contract is required to provide waste processing arrangements from April 2019 onwards.

Suffolk Coastal District Council is planning to deliver one of its most sizeable and ambitious capital investment programmes to date with an estimated value of about £30m, without relying on any external borrowing.

Cllr Poulter continued:

“The reality is that Suffolk Coastal protected the ‘free’ collection of garden waste for as long as it could,” 

 “The key thing that people need to realise is that this is about us protecting local services and being able to keep Council Tax increases down to a minimum. Any funds raised from the garden waste collection service will be re-invested in providing services to local people.”

“Suffolk Coastal remains committed to an ambitious programme of community-based and major capital investments, such as the current leisure redevelopment, in the coming years. So we need to continue to generate income where we can, now and in the future.”

If you choose not to join the optional Garden Waste Collection Scheme – then please compost!

The Suffolk Waste Partnership, which includes Suffolk Coastal District Council, funds a scheme making home compost bins available at subsidised prices from as little as £8.99 for a 220 litre compost bin or £9.99 for a 330 litre bin.

The scheme also includes subsidies on several composting systems which can deal with some cooked food waste. To order a home compost bin or to see more details, visit the Get Composting website or call 0844 571 4444 quoting SUF 17L.

In addition, all households will be invited to keep and re-use any unwanted brown bins if they wish.  The bins are suitable for a number of alternative uses, including composting.

Local people are being urged to: ‘Be kind to the environment and re-purpose your brown bins’

Wheeled bins can be put to use in many different ways such as: tool storage, feed store, water butt and compost bin to name a few, and there will be other ideas on our website shortly.

Please consider whether you would like to keep your brown bins after the upgrade.  You can tell us if you want us to remove them when you subscribe to the scheme.  We will let you know later about when to present your unwanted brown bins for removal.

Click here to find out more about the garden waste scheme, composting and re-purposing your old brown bin.