Leighton Buzzard pensioner Vera could push her bin, but council said it was too heavy and may break their lorry

Vera and her green bin
Vera and her green bin

A 76-year-old Leighton Buzzard pensioner who wheels her green bin out each week claims she was shocked when the council refused to collect it because it was “too heavy”.

Vera Paul, of St Leonards Close, recently had a professional gardener de-weed her lawn and plants.

The contents

The contents

However, Vera claims the council gave her a rubbish service, as after pushing her half full bin in place for collection, it wasn’t emptied.

Vera claims: “I contacted the council, and the reason they gave was that it was too heavy for the vehicle; I’m 76 - I have pushed that from my garden to the pavement; a council supervisor came out to see the weight of my bin, but they said they couldn’t move it!

“They also said there was too much soil in with the weeds - but we’re a sandy soil, some are clay. What do we do? The council just wants small housing estate gardens.

“They want to charge £40 , but if they don’t empty my bin I want a reduced rate!”

A Central Bedfordshire Council spokeswoman, said: “A Waste Service Officer confirmed that the bin contents were too heavy .

“If a bin is overly heavy it is possible that the lifting mechanism could break causing the bin to rotate and either be lost in the vehicle or worst case thrown back out towards the operatives or passers-by.

“The composting sites that we send the garden waste to do not accept soil , but residents are able to take up to 100 litres of soil to our Household Waste Recycling Centres.

“We are considering a range of options for change at the moment including an opt in / out paid-for service for garden waste.

“Garden waste collections are not a statutory service that we have to undertake as a council, so we are consulting on an opt-in charge.

“There is no legal provision within Council Tax legislation that would allow us to grant Ms Paul a reduction.”

But Vera claimed: “If I can push the bin at 76, how could it break a lorry!?”

> Items that are accepted as garden waste can be seen here: www.centralbedfordshire.gov.uk/waste/recycling/garden.aspx
> Residents can have their say on the bin changes consultation until 20 April at 5pm: www.centralbedfordshire.gov.uk/bin-changes