Dear Wera - an open letter
Posted By: Susan Emmott
Date Posted: 22/05/2007
Over the last few weeks we have crossed swords over what I call Fortnightly Bin Collections and what you call Alternate Weekly or Managed Collections. Maybe at times we have both been a little over zealous in the defence of our respective positions on the issue and sweetness and light have not always shone through. However, let us put all that to one side, because now is the time for dialogue and consensus as it is becoming clear that more and more people are starting to have concerns about the new waste collection proposals in Rochdale.
With due respect, your latest diary response to the resolution passed by the Heywood Township to support weekly collections is a little churlish. To suggest that the Heywood Township decide how to cut other services to keep the weekly collection smacks of petulance. All the Heywood councillors are responding to comments they hear from the people they represent who have very real concerns about the new collections. This obviously includes Peter Rush and Doreen Brophy-Lee who both supported the resolution.
Now it seems that even Councillor Jean Ashworth, who has supported you loyally on this matter is also starting to have concerns. This week, on the Rochdale Online message board she states, “But I do think the fortnightly food waste is a problem and one we are going to have to look at in the Pennines”. I also know, through my conversations with Councillor Ashley Dearnley and former Councillor Beryl Wright that many people are unhappy with the new collection service in the Pennines. These councillors are clearly responding to comments passed on to them by concerned residents.
In March, you suggested that the councillor responsible for waste collection in Stockport would visit Rochdale to see the new collection in the Pennines with a view to bringing it to Stockport. As yet, I am not aware that this visit has taken place. But may I respectfully suggest that you do invite the people from Stockport to Rochdale so that they can show us how they are meeting recycling targets and keeping a weekly collection of household and food waste.
You state that the Heywood councillors are supporting what you now call a “weekly landfill collection”. I suppose that is only fair for you to say seeing as I constantly refer to the new collections as “Fortnightly Bin Collections”. However, if we in Heywood support “weekly landfill collections”, then it is only fair to say that you support “fortnightly landfill collections” because the non-recyclable waste that goes to landfill will still go to landfill whether it is collected weekly or fortnightly.
What we really need to be doing is encouraging residents to separate waste so less goes to landfill and this can be done without fortnightly collections of household and food waste. Indeed, it is being done in Stockport. It is being done in Rochdale too, outside of the Pennines Pilot Scheme, as you yourself stated at the last full council when you said that recycling had increased by a very respectable 7% in those areas not in the pilot scheme. People need carrots, not sticks, to encourage them to recycle more.
I admire your passion and total commitment to recycling, but I wish you would take on board the genuine concerns that people have about the new collection service. If you can find a way to meet recycling targets and still keep a weekly collection of household and food waste as Stockport has done, then I can assure you of my full support and backing.
More Entries By Susan Emmott
- Caught on Candid Camera! Date posted: 07/02/2008
- Community Participation or William's Warm Words? Date posted: 25/01/2008
- Welcome Jonathan Date posted: 02/12/2007
- Give us our school places! Date posted: 17/11/2007
- I'm still waiting, Wera Date posted: 11/11/2007
- More clarification please Wera Date posted: 07/11/2007
- F.A.O Councillor Wera Hobhouse Date posted: 30/10/2007
- Fortnightly bin collections - I'll move on when you sort it out! Date posted: 07/10/2007
- Heywood Against Landfill Date posted: 19/09/2007
- Uncollected Council Tax Scandal Date posted: 09/09/2007
- More Pennines fortnightly bin collection propaganda road shows ! Date posted: 30/08/2007
- Fortnightly Bin Collections - if you're lucky! Date posted: 16/08/2007
- Abdul Chowdry - my own tribute. Date posted: 07/08/2007
- Thanks Brenda Date posted: 18/07/2007
- Official - Fortnightly Bin Collections are rubbish!!!! Date posted: 16/07/2007
- Recycled Teenagers - the sequel! Date posted: 11/07/2007
- Not just in Heywood - Bamford as well! Date posted: 24/06/2007
- "A goodwill gesture" Date posted: 21/06/2007
- Fortnightly Bin Collection Fiasco Date posted: 13/06/2007
- Chaos, utter chaos! Date posted: 07/06/2007
- The Emperor's New Clothes Date posted: 26/05/2007
- Well, I tried. Date posted: 23/05/2007
- Fortnightly Bin Collections - Opposition grows Date posted: 21/05/2007
- Update Date posted: 20/05/2007
- Update on diary Date posted: 19/05/2007
- Thank you Date posted: 17/05/2007