Should skips be put on estate for people to dump their rubbish in?

Should skips be put on estate for people to dump their rubbish in?

Should skips be put on estate for people to dump their rubbish in?

First published in News

YES says Rosanne Bostock, organiser of OxClean and member of the Oxford Civic Society

Oxford Mail:

OVER the weekend of March 7, Oxford Civic Society organised two litter-picking groups in Blackbird Leys and Greater Leys for the annual OxClean Spring Clean.

While we have been litter-picking across Oxford for several years, it was the first time we had done it in the area.

We went from the end of Dunnock Way right along to Fry’s Hill Park.

Superficially Blackbird Leys is very clean, and the council has put a lot of effort into making the area look nice with clean roads and so on, but the undergrowth and footpaths are full of rubbish.

It quickly became clear on our litter pick that there is a problem in the area with disposal of larger items of rubbish.

Apart from garden refuse and smaller bits of litter like fast food wrappers, there were much larger items hidden in the shrubberies.

We saw pushchairs, beds, mattresses, bikes, paint cans and suitcases in one small area. In an ideal world people would ring the council when they need to get rid of large items, and the council would come to collect them.

But they can charge, which lots of people do not want or cannot afford to pay.

Not even I, a member of OxClean, have the council’s telephone number or email address at my fingertips.

When you do go on the website it is complex and daunting, and a nightmare of complications.

Similarly, when you phone the Town Hall they are slow to answer and you just get presented with endless extensions.

I live in North Oxford, and my 85-year-old neighbour, who is unwell, has moth-eaten carpets in his driveway. His children work full-time and don’t want to put the grubby things in their cars.

I can’t even bear to think of him trying to ask the council to come and collect these carpets because it’s so complicated.

I think they should bring skips into Blackbird Leys so people can dump their rubbish there rather than fields.

Apparently this has been done elsewhere, Wheatley for instance.

It could be a permanent fixture, or skips could be rotated between sites – say by the Dunnock Way NHS car park one week and in Long Ground another. This would give Blackbird Leys residents the opportunity to get rid of rubbish on a regular basis.

Possibly the council, or the housing associations, would pay for this. I don’t believe it would be an expensive scheme. This would need to be discussed with the local councillors and community officer, which I fully intend to do.

While a skip is not pretty, nor is litter or fly-tipping. There are also many health hazards with this litter just lying about.

People have raised concerns that people would travel to dump rubbish there – I doubt that people from other parts of Oxford would bother to come to deposit their rubbish in the skips. At the very least it is worth considering on a trial basis.

NO says Rae Humberstone, Oxfordshire county councillor for Blackbird Leys

Oxford Mail:

WHILE I do not wish to dismiss this idea out of hand, I think there are several issues that need to be addressed before even contemplating such a scheme.

Where would the skips be located? Would residents be willing to have a skip placed outside or near their home?

These questions can only be answered by the residents, after proper consultation, and not by any outside body, regardless of how good their intentions.

If such a scheme bore fruit, then it would have to be for one skip only and it would have to be in a central location. However, the only suitably central location in Blackbird Leys is the leisure centre but that is now a building site and will remain so for the duration of the work on the new pool.

How long would the skips be in place? No longer than a few hours, say four to six, would be my answer, certainly not overnight and definitely not over a period of days. Such a move would make any location a magnet for every fly-tipper in the county, let alone the city.

How would such a scheme be policed?

Any such scheme would have to be closely overseen, to prevent the dumping of hazardous waste.

The consequences of a child, or anybody for that matter, coming into contact with hazardous materials does not bear thinking about.

So who would police the scheme? Environmental Health, our already very busy recycling teams, the skip suppliers?

Also, my fear is that such a scheme would detract from our existing bulk collection service and that some households might use the skips to dump household waste (black plastic bags, recyclables, etc) in the skips rather than in their wheelie bins.

However, I concede if that meant the difference between a correctly filled bin and an overflowing one it would probably be the lesser of two evils.

So who would be expected to pick up the tab for such an operation, the city’s council tax payers?

I doubt very much whether they would consider themselves honoured and privileged enough to be asked to cough up for a service they’re already paying for.

The city council is already investing heavily in the Cleaner Greener initiative, so that’s probably not an option either.

Maybe the skip operators would consider picking up the bill? However, when last I checked I don’t believe any of them had yet been awarded charitable status.

In closing I have to say that this scheme, like all well-intentioned initiatives, suffers from too much theoretical pipe-dreaming and not enough practical problem-solving.

However, having said that, I am willing to carry out a feasibility study on the basis of one skip, in one location, realistically funded.

Comments (4)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

5:30pm Wed 19 Mar 14

JanetJ says...

Are people really that lazy - a quick scan at the OCC website gives the following info:

"Bulky Waste Collections Service
If you have no other way of disposing of your bulky waste, you can arrange a collection from us. We aim to recycle as much of the bulky waste collected as possible, however if it is not suitable for reuse of recycling then it will go to landfill. Each household is entitled to 2 free collections per year of up to 3 items per visit.
To request a collection, please contact us on 01865 249811.
Items left out for collection must be visible and accessible on your property. Collections from unlocked garages are not permitted.
There are several exceptions:
For a terraced property, once an appointment has been made the items can be placed out on the pavement the night before.
For a flat, items will be needed to be bought down to ground level. If this is not possible then a site survey may be necessary.
We do not collect from inside properties. If you are unable to place items out for collection then please get a relative, friend, carer or neighbour to place the items out for you".
It is FREE
There is also an email link on the web site. Contrary to Ms Bostocks claim I thought the web site was easy to navigate and I am not a computer whizz.
Are people really that lazy - a quick scan at the OCC website gives the following info: "Bulky Waste Collections Service If you have no other way of disposing of your bulky waste, you can arrange a collection from us. We aim to recycle as much of the bulky waste collected as possible, however if it is not suitable for reuse of recycling then it will go to landfill. Each household is entitled to 2 free collections per year of up to 3 items per visit. To request a collection, please contact us on 01865 249811. Items left out for collection must be visible and accessible on your property. Collections from unlocked garages are not permitted. There are several exceptions: For a terraced property, once an appointment has been made the items can be placed out on the pavement the night before. For a flat, items will be needed to be bought down to ground level. If this is not possible then a site survey may be necessary. We do not collect from inside properties. If you are unable to place items out for collection then please get a relative, friend, carer or neighbour to place the items out for you". It is FREE There is also an email link on the web site. Contrary to Ms Bostocks claim I thought the web site was easy to navigate and I am not a computer whizz. JanetJ
  • Score: 5

5:32pm Wed 19 Mar 14

West Oxon Webwatcher says...

The problem is that when the skips are (or were) regularly placed around the district (West Oxon), unscrupulous traders filed the skips up with trade waste to avoid paying trade refuse charges so there is a further cost to the local authority in lower income.
The problem is that when the skips are (or were) regularly placed around the district (West Oxon), unscrupulous traders filed the skips up with trade waste to avoid paying trade refuse charges so there is a further cost to the local authority in lower income. West Oxon Webwatcher
  • Score: 1

5:44pm Wed 19 Mar 14

Dilligaf2010 says...

"Not even I, a member of OxClean, have the council’s telephone number or email address at my fingertips."......
........Why not?
I'm not even a member of OxClean, but I've got phone numbers, and e-mail addresses for numerous Council personnel and departments.
There's nothing difficult about getting bulky waste collected, unless of course the individuals are bone idle, and if that's the case their rubbish wouldn't be put in the skips anyway.
"Not even I, a member of OxClean, have the council’s telephone number or email address at my fingertips."...... ........Why not? I'm not even a member of OxClean, but I've got phone numbers, and e-mail addresses for numerous Council personnel and departments. There's nothing difficult about getting bulky waste collected, unless of course the individuals are bone idle, and if that's the case their rubbish wouldn't be put in the skips anyway. Dilligaf2010
  • Score: 4

6:03pm Wed 19 Mar 14

BicesterBod says...

It's funny how people can afford to buy these items in the first place, then when they're broken, worn out or just too old, the same people cannot then afford to pay to dispose of them.
It's funny how people can afford to buy these items in the first place, then when they're broken, worn out or just too old, the same people cannot then afford to pay to dispose of them. BicesterBod
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree