Despite huge opposition and complaints from residents the Council plans to push ahead with plans to implement fortnightly collections of non-recyclable rubbish in Stroud Green in June. They have written to residents in the last week telling them about the new arrangements, which also means new recycling wheelie bins will replace the current green recycling boxes and all properties will therefore have to have at least two wheelie bins.
Fortnightly collections have already been introduced into Highgate, Muswell Hill and parts of Wood Green, so this week I went out with Muswell Hill councillor Gail Engert to see the results for myself. Even in leafy roads where the houses have large front gardens there were some overflowing bins, but where houses had been broken up into lots of flats the situation was terrible (see picture). And in terraced streets where there are tiny gardens, residents are complaining their pavements have become a permanent sea of wheelie bins with nowhere else to go. Clearly the Council’s experiment is not working.
This all bodes very badly for Stroud Green where there are lots of densely-populated terraced roads, and lots of houses that have been broken up into flats. My colleagues and I have begged the council to halt the planned expansion and to review all the problems in the phase 1 areas like Muswell Hill. However, the Labour Cabinet member in charge is refusing to listen and anyone who complains about overflowing bins has been attacked for ’scaremongering‘. We will continue to argue in favour of more recycling and against fortnightly collections, but if they insist on pressing ahead we will do everything we can to try and mitigate the impact and sort out the problems that arise.