AN eagle-eyed dustbin man saved a boxful of kittens after finding them dumped with a mound of rubbish at the side of the road.

The Veolia waste disposal worker found the four young cats in a taped up box just off the A133 near Clacton while completing the rounds last week.

The box was abandoned next to the pile of rubbish waiting to be picked up.

Cat rescuer Brenda Burton has slammed heartless pet owners after hearing the tale from her husband, who also works at Veolia.

She said: “It was so lucky that his man decided to look in the box, or it could have ended very badly for the poor kittens.

“If he hadn’t opened the box it would have been thrown in the lorry, crushed up and taken to a landfill site. They probably wouldn’t have survived that.

“Whoever did this should not be allowed to get away with it.”

The kittens have all been re-homed with Veolia employees.

The incident was reported to the RSPCA. If anyone has evidence of the kittens being dumped they should contact the charity, which will prosecute irresponsible pet owners.