Households are reminded that the current green waste collection service will soon end and be replaced with the new optional, paid-for service.
The changes mean residents’ final green waste collection date under the four bag limit service will be made on the usual day between Monday 17 and Friday 28 March. Households were informed of the changes in January and a reminder is going out this week in their annual council tax bills.
Residents are asked not to put out bags of green waste after their final collection date, as they will no longer be picked up.
Replacing the current service, the optional and paid-for service begins on Monday 31 March.
Time is running out to register in time for the start of the service; residents need to sign up by Friday 14 March to guarantee receiving their wheelie bin, or supply of bags, ready for the first collection round.
The service costs £40 annually for a fortnightly collection throughout the year, except two weeks at Christmas, which is equivalent to £1.60 per collection, and so far more than 4,500 households have signed up.
It includes a wheelie bin (or annual supply of bags for households the council considers unsuitable for a wheelie bin).
To register, please call: (01793) 445501 or go online at www.swindon.gov.uk/greenwaste
Former railway worker Phil Harman, aged 63, from central Swindon, has already done so and received his green bin.
He said: “As a keen gardener, I’m looking forward to the new service. Obviously no one likes to pay for something new, but having weighed things up, it should be pretty good value and a lot more convenient.
“The bags, which I had to buy, could be awkward and then there was the hazard of them splitting, which happened a few times, so the bin should make things easier and tidier.
"I was initially worried about the bin potentially being stolen, but have been reassured that each bin is only registered to your specific property so that shouldn’t be an issue. I’ve also labelled it with a marker pen, so am ready for all systems go.”
Households which do not choose to sign up for the new service can take their green waste to the Household Waste Recycling Centre, in Cheney Manor Industrial Estate, where it goes on to be composted.
Alternatively, composting at home is an option and the council has teamed up with SEQOL Enterprise Works, which provides employment opportunities for people with disabilities, to offer heavily discounted compost bins for sale with prices starting at £15.99.
To buy a bin, or for more information, please call: (01793) 464646 or go online at www.seqol.org/enterprise-works
Cllr Richard Hurley, Cabinet Member for Public Protection, Housing and StreetSmart, said: “The current service is stopping soon and residents will need to sign up by Friday to guarantee receiving their bin, or bags, in time for the first collection round of the new service which starts from Monday 31 March.
"Subscription levels are in line with expectations and we anticipate residents will continue signing up over the spring and summer months.
"Residents are also being reminded that their last collection date under the current service is coming soon and are asked not to put out bags of green waste after this final collection, as they will no longer be picked up.
"I would like to thank residents in advance for their co-operation with the changes.”
More information about the changes is available at www.swindon.gov.uk/recycling