PUBLISHED: 11:53 24 April 2008 | UPDATED: 13:12 06 May 2010
SIR, — This will be a rant. For readers who do not wish to read a rant, move on to the next letter. I make no apologies for it. Firstly the facts, our recycling has been collected once, yes once, since Christmas! Every week households across the land comp
SIR, - This will be a rant. For readers who do not wish to read a rant, move on to the next letter. I make no apologies for it.
Firstly the facts, our recycling has been collected once, yes once, since Christmas!
Every week households across the land comply with local authority wishes and duly sort out our waste into various containers. I include our family within this group as we daily identify our glass, plastic, newspapers, cardboard, garden material and tins and place them separately into their loving boxes ready for the collection paid for by our council tax. Each Wednesday evening or Thursday morning we place our array of recycling outside our house and wait with bated breath and after two days we wearily replace them all into our rear garden still fully laden.
Sometimes I grow weary and fill my car and traipse off to the local recycling point or waste centre but I wonder why? After all I do pay my council tax.
Oh we are such a docile lot! The French would be burning theirs in the streets, the Italians would be stockpiling theirs at the end of each road and the Americans would be shooting councillors. But we Brits are so civilised. We suffer in silence and accepted those lame excuses of "teething troubles" and "mistaken schedules".
Maybe we are attracted to the growing towers of modern art that litter our drives, or perhaps we delight in seeing our overflowing debris scattered to the four corners by the Spring breezes or perhaps we are just too put upon with the daily grind to complain.
Last week a local election campaigner called and we tearfully rendered our recycling difficulty. Like Superwoman she made some phone calls and duly informed us that our recycling was being collected the following day. Yes! Our prayers had been answered by this political saviour. That evening we excitedly deployed our gatherings and waited with bated breath. We awoke to crashing glass and loud clanging at 7am as the cart was heard in the next street. With bated breath the family gathered at the window and awaited the glorious event. Guess what? They drove and walked straight past!
Perplexed, I huddled back under the duvet and cried. Walking the local roads later that day I spotted countless houses with recycling still awaiting collection.
Answers? Maybe the district council has fulfilled it's politically-correct staff allocation and the four collection men were partially-sighted and didn't spot the seven plastic containers, some with lids on and some overflowing, that sat some few metres from their path. Maybe they were non-English-speaking migrants, filling those diversity places and couldn't read the English print on those newspapers flapping in the wind. Maybe they were new staff who had not yet been on their four-week "Recycled Refuse Identification Induction and Team Building Course". Maybe they had heard of the reputation of the Oysterfields estate and only stopped at every tenth premises to aid a swift getaway to safer grounds. Or maybe......there are so many options.
Now the council will no doubt spend hundreds of thousands implementing microchip refuse identity technology and employ a few £45,000 per annum "Waste Management Weighing Officers" or perhaps even a couple of £40,000 per annum "Refuse Diversity Managers" to establish how much rubbish is deposited each week sorted by ethnic diversity of the St Albans community to comply with "EU Law 4567543/Section B" of course.
But perhaps I could suggest that they save time, energy and money by employing a couple of old-fashioned dustbin men who will collect what we have duly deposited. We live in hope!
To make matters worse, as I write this rant the postman has just delivered yet another demand and statement for £1,400 council tax so that they may continue to offer us such wonderful services. Oh well, off to the tip again - no point ranting is there?
Oysterfields, St Albans.