Garden waste collections are set to resume as staffing levels stabilise following a period of staff absences.
The fortnightly service will restart in Basingstoke and Deane from Monday 24 January 2022 and in Hart from Monday 31 January 2022.
The garden waste collection service was suspended on Monday 10 January to enable staff to prioritise the core waste and recycling services, where there was a backlog of collections from the Christmas and new year period.
The service has been under constant review by Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council, Hart District Council and Serco since the service was suspended. The review has focused on the numbers of staff available and the numbers required to maintain core waste and recycling services and provide a reliable garden waste collection service. Serco has now confirmed that it is in a position to restart the regular scheduled garden waste collection service, although staffing will continue to be reviewed.
As the service resumes, garden waste customers can put their real Christmas trees out for collection. Trees can also be taken to one of the tree recycling sites across the area.
Apart from Christmas trees, the crews will be unable to collect extra garden waste. If they take extra garden waste from some customers, this will impact their ability to complete rounds, which would be unfair on those missed as a result.
Both councils are anticipating that on the first collection a large number of full bins and Christmas trees will be put out for collection and customers are asked to bear with the crews as they work their way around the area.
An extra collection will be added to all subscriptions to make up for the one missed. Customers will receive a letter four weeks before they are required to renew their subscriptions with their new renewal date.
Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Recycling and Waste Cllr Hayley Eachus said: “It is good news that Serco’s staffing has stabilised and we are able to restart the garden waste collection service. The service has been hit by a number of disruptions over the last year, which I know has been very frustrating for customers. I apologise for the inconvenience caused and thank them for their patience and understanding. I hope that as we move into the spring with a more positive staffing picture, the service will continue without further disruption.”
Cllr Alan Oliver, Hart District Council's Cabinet Member for Environment, said: "We're pleased to be able to resume the service after such a challenging start to the year and I hope this is the end to such a turbulent time. Thank you to all our customers for bearing with us as we have had to prioritise our resources towards waste, recycling and clinical waste collections."
The best way to keep up to date with changes to services in Basingstoke is by signing up to the council’s weekly eNewsletter www.basingstoke.gov.uk/signup or by visiting www.basingstoke.gov.uk/gardenwaste.
For changes to services in Hart, please visit www.hart.gov.uk/waste-recycling