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Garden waste - frequently asked questions

General Information


Central government has cut the allocation of funding to Wiltshire Council by more than £15m this year. This, combined with the
rise in demand for key services, the growth in the number of households, and inflation, means the council has to save £25m.
Tough choices had to be made including charging for collecting garden waste.Almost all of our neighbouring councils charge between £38.50 and £48 per year for the kerbside collection of garden waste.

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The cost of the service will be £42 per year. No concessions will be available.

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You can sign up and pay online. Payment can be made by debit or credit card. Alternatively you can pay over the phone by calling 0300 456 0103. You could also post a cheque made payable to Wiltshire Council to Waste Management, Wiltshire Council, Bythesea Road, Trowbridge, Wiltshire, BA14 8JN. Please write on the back of the cheque your name, the address including the postcode of the property where the bin would be used, your phone number and the words 'garden waste'.

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Yes, if you would like to have your garden waste collected then you will need to pay £42 per year. We will make sure that you have the same capacity for garden waste as those people who have garden waste bins. This will mean that you can have up to a maximum of four sacks. If you have room to accommodate a bin please contact us. Alternatively subsidised food waste digesters, which also compost garden waste, are available.

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You do not need to contact us to opt-out.

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Yes, each additional bin will be charged at £40 per year per bin. There is no limit on the number of bins residents can have.

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When you pay to receive a garden waste collection your property details will be added to a collection round and given to a collection crew. You will be sent a garden waste sticker to place on your bin. This will identify that you have paid for the year. Bins will not be emptied if the stickers are not clearly visible to our staff and your property details are not on the collection rounds.

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Yes, you can share your bin with a neighbour if you wish. The bin will be charged to one resident and will be collected from that property only.

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You can sign up to receive the service at any point during the year. The annual charge runs from 1 July until 30 June each year. If you sign up part way through the year you will be charged a pro-rata amount until the end of June.

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Yes, you can sign up and pay for the new service at any time. Once you have paid for the new service the council will arrange for the delivery of a garden waste bin. There will be no delivery charge as you have not had a garden waste bin collected within the last year.

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Currently your council tax contributes to the cost of running this service but we can no longer afford to offer this service free of charge. The council is currently facing considerable financial challenges with the need to make £25 million savings in 2016-17 in order to invest in the our priority areas such as protecting those who are most vulnerable, boosting the local economy and empowering communities to do more for themselves.

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Alternatives to paying for garden waste collection

Yes, we will continue to offer subsidised food waste digesters which will also compost garden waste. This is a good alternative to paying for a collection or taking garden waste to a household recycling centre. You will also create great compost to use at home.

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Yes, you can continue to take your garden waste to any of Wiltshire Council's household recycling centres free of charge. Please check the opening hours of your nearest household recycling centre before visiting. The council will continue to offer subsidised food waste digesters which will also compost garden waste. This is a good alternative to paying for a collection or taking garden waste to the household recycling centre. You will also create great compost to use at home.

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The council offers subsidised food waste digesters which will also compost garden waste. This is a good alternative to taking garden waste to the household recycling centre. You will also create great compost to use at home.

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Charging


No concessions will be available.

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Almost all of our neighbouring councils charge between £38.50 and £48 per year for the kerbside collection of garden waste.

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Central government has cut the allocation of funding to Wiltshire Council by more than £15m this year. This, combined with the rise in demand for key services, the growth in the number of households, and inflation, means the council has to save £25m. 

Tough choices had to be made including charging for collecting garden waste.

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No. The collection crews will visit your property regardless of whether you put your bin out for collection. You could talk to your neighbours about the possibility of sharing the cost and a bin.

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The new chargeable service will only be suspended for two weeks over the Christmas and New Year period, as is currently the case. The annual £42 charge is based on 25 collections per year.

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We hope that most residents will either pay for the service, compost at home or take their garden waste to their nearest household recycling centre. The council will continually monitor the number and nature of fly tipping cases to assess whether charging for garden waste increases fly tipping, but does not expect a significant increase.

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You will be charged from 1 July until 30 June each year. You will receive an annual reminder to renew your contract. You can opt out of the service at any time but you will not be entitled to a refund.

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If your bin is stolen please contact us for further advice.

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No, this is an optional service, you will only pay if you would like to receive a fortnightly collection of garden waste.

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Bins and collections


You should not put garden waste in your household waste bin. Additional waste placed next to your household waste bin will not be collected. If you choose not to receive the kerbside garden waste collection service then you could compost at home or can take your garden waste to any of the council's household recycling centres at no charge.

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Yes. The council will not collect garden waste for two weeks over the Christmas and New Year period which will mean that residents that pay for the chargeable collection will receive 25 collections each year.

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No. Only residents who pay to have their garden waste collected at the kerbside will have their Christmas trees collected. One Christmas tree will be collected per property. Residents who don't sign up for the chargeable garden waste service can take their Christmas trees to any of the council's household recycling centres for free.

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No, all garden waste must be contained within the bin with the bin lid closed.

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The council will continue to own the bins.

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We will replace or repair bins which have been damaged or lost by the council. Where we consider that the householder's negligence resulted in the damage of the bin a charge will be made for the repair or replacement.

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Yes. These larger bins are left over from before Wiltshire Council was formed in 2009. It is council policy to provide 180 litre garden waste bins and therefore as these old bins need to be replaced they will be replaced with standard 180 litre bins, ensuring all residents receive the same service. It would not be cost effective to retrieve all larger bins in use and replace them with new.

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No. The £42 per year charge is based on the collection of garden waste from a 180 litre wheeled bin which is the standard size used across the county.

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When you move house all bins should be left at the property. Please contact the council to inform us that you are moving so we can collect your garden waste bin or ask the new resident if they wish to receive the service. 

If you would like to continue to receive a charged garden waste collection from your new property we can transfer your contract to your new property and will ensure that a bin is available at your new house. If you are moving outside of Wiltshire or would like to cancel your contract you can do so but you would not be entitled to a refund.

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Yes. If you do not want to pay to have your garden waste collected then you can keep your bin but we will not empty it after 14 June. If at a later date you choose to sign up for the charged garden waste service you can use your existing bin providing it is serviceable. 

The council will collect your bin should you not wish to keep it. If the council has retrieved your bin and within a year you sign up for the chargeable service there will be a £25 bin delivery charge in addition to the collection charge for the service.

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You should clearly mark your property name or number on the garden waste sticker that you will be given once you have paid for the service. You should also ensure that your bin is placed in a location which means that it is difficult for others to put waste in your bin, unless you choose to share this with them. 

Retrieving your bin from the kerbside soon after it is emptied will also help to ensure that others do not use your bin.

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You can sign up to receive the service at any point during the year. The annual charge runs from 1 July until 30 June each year. If you sign up part way through the year you will be charged a pro-rata amount, e.g. if you sign up in January, you will pay from March to ensure that we have time to assign you a collection day, send you a sticker and deliver you a bin if needed. 

If the council has already retrieved your bin and within a year you sign up for the chargeable service there will be a £25 bin delivery charge in addition to the annual fee.

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If we have already retrieved your bin and within a year you decide to sign up for the chargeable service there will be a £25 bin delivery charge for a new bin in addition to the annual fee.

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Extra information


Yes. However we hope that many residents will recognise the benefits of the kerbside collection and choose to pay the £42 annual charge rather than use the household recycling centres. The £42 annual charge equates to £1.68 per collection.

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Currently, collection crews have to visit everyone with a garden waste bin on every collection day throughout the year, even if they do not put their bin out for collection. The new charged service will mean that only residents who pay for the service will be visited by the crews on their collection days. This may result in vehicles travelling further distances between collections. We will keep the collection rounds under regular review to keep them as efficient as possible.

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We will be encouraging residents to sign up for the chargeable service. Those residents who choose not to pay could compost their garden waste at home or take it to one of the council's household recycling centres. With these options we hope to avoid any increase in waste going to landfill or to one of the facilities that generates energy from waste. We will keep these quantities under review.

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We would always encourage residents to recycle as much as possible. The council does not expect a significant reduction in recycling rates. We hope that most residents will either pay for the service, take their garden waste to their nearest household recycling centre or compost at home. The council will continually monitor recycling rates to understand the impact of charging for garden waste.

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Yes. Under the Environmental Protection Act 1990, councils can charge for the collection of garden waste. Charging for the collection of garden waste will bring Wiltshire Council in line with almost all neighbouring councils who have a charged service. You can still take your garden waste to any of the council's household recycling centres at no charge.

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Last updated: 9 May 2016 | Last reviewed: 9 May 2016