Bolton Council is preparing to roll out slim bins across the borough, in order to save £12.5m over 10 years and increase recycling levels across the borough.
The council already spends £68,000 per collection day disposing of grey bin waste, or more than £17m in one year. Therefore it must take steps to reduce the amount of grey bin waste and increase the amount that residents are recycling.
Tameside, Trafford and Stockport have already introduced slim grey bins, whilst other Greater Manchester councils have moved to three weekly collections.
From June 20, the council will be replacing all 240 litre grey bins with slim 140 litre grey bins across the borough.
Two weeks before the delivery of their slim bin, residents will receive a sticker on their bin, reminding them that on their next collection day, their 240 litre bin will be removed and replaced with a new 140 litre slim grey bin.
Residents can check when their bin is due for delivery by visiting www.bolton.gov.uk/loverecycling and entering their postcode into the postcode checker.
On the day of the exchange, the bin collection crews will empty the bins as usual and will be followed by a vehicle which will remove the old 240 litre bins and a separate vehicle which will deliver the new 140 litre bins to the front of the property. Each new slim grey bin will have an address sticker so residents can easily identify their own bin.
There may be a delay on the day between the collection and delivery of the bins, or the new slim grey bin may be delivered ahead of the removal of the old bin. This is to ensure there are not too many vehicles in a street at any one time.
The council is therefore asking residents to be patient and wait until the following day to report any issues at www.bolton.gov.uk/loverecycling
To ensure residents are prepared for the changes and to offer help and support, the council has already carried out a variety of engagement activities over the last year.
Households have either received a visit or a leaflet advising them of the changes. Residents have been offered help and advice on how to recycle more and encouraged to slim their bin ahead of the full rollout.
The council has also focused on increasing the amount of food waste recycled and trialled a ‘no food waste’ sticker campaign in targeted areas to remind residents to recycle food waste, as well as ensuring that all residents have information on how to get food caddies and liners.
A competition with schools is also currently being held, to encourage children to know what goes in the burgundy bin, with the incentive of a prize for their school.
Bolton Council’s Executive Cabinet Member for Environmental Services, Councillor Nick Peel, said: “We appreciate that this could be a difficult time for residents.
“However, the council is spending £68,000 per collection day on disposing of grey bin waste, so we had to take steps to reduce the amount of grey bin waste and increase the amount that residents recycle.
“We feel that moving to a slim grey bin is the best way to make these savings with less impact on residents. Slim bins have already been introduced in three other Greater Manchester councils and residents there have adapted very well and recycling rates have increased and we are confident that Bolton residents can manage this change too.
“We understand that some households and some families may already be recycling everything and may be worrying about how they will cope, so we want to offer all the support and help we can. We also understand that some residents need extra help to understand what can and cannot go in the various bins and we are going to provide that additional help.”
The council also wants to encourage any residents who are concerned they may not manage with the slim bin need help to recycle their waste to visitwww.bolton.gov.uk/loverecycling and apply for a waste audit or ask for advice from a Recycling Officer.
Large families with six or more people, families with three or more children in nappies and households with one or more people producing medical waste may also be eligible to keep their 240l bin, as long as they are recycling properly. Residents who meet these criteria should also visit www.bolton.gov.uk/loverecycling and ask for a waste audit.