AN exclusive Gazette poll has found residents are split down the middle over council bosses’ plans to introduce wheelie bins and move to fortnightly bin collections in Tendring.

Tendring Council has proposed moving from weekly to fortnightly bin collections for non-recyclable waste next year as part of an extension to its waste and recycling contract.

Environment boss Michael Talbot said it would cost the council at least £400,000 on top of what it currently pays just to renew its contract with Veolia due to pension changes, increased diesel price, an increase in the minimum wage and other new regulations.

Holland Residents’ Association last week said about 75 per cent of its members were against the plans, however an exclusive online poll of more than 1,100 Gazette readers found 50 per cent are in favour of the plans and 50 per cent are against.

But some readers have called for the council to consider putting the contract out to tender rather than renewing its contract with Veolia and others have called on the authority to step up its recycling efforts if it wants to introduce wheelie bins.

Mr Talbot said the council is perusing its option to extend it current contract because otherwise it would have to launch a European-wide tender process costing about £200,000, which Mr Talbot said would have been “money down the drain”.

Concerns have also been raised over the visual impact of the “unsightly” wheelie bins and the impact on the elderly.

In response, Mr Talbot: “The introduction of wheelie bins to properties to replace black sacks should prevent the rupture of black sacks by seagulls, dogs, foxes and their like, which have resulted in domestic rubbish being scattered down many of our streets looking a real mess.

“Existing arrangements for elderly and disabled residents to register with us will continue, and for these people Veolia operatives will come into your property, perhaps round the back, and collect your bin.

“People have asked ‘should I continue to use a block sack in the wheelie bin?’ The answer is this is no longer necessary - put landfill rubbish straight in your bin.”

Mr Talbot said subsequently questions have been raised over whether wheelie bins will then need to be washed out every week.

He added: “My answer is that if food waste in in the food caddy, collected every week, and food tins are in the green box with plastic bottles, collected on alternate weeks to the red box for paper and card, then what is there to dirty the bin as the vast majority of its contents are dry waste?”

Mr Talbot highlighted that properties without space for the storage of a wheelie bin will continue to receive a weekly waste collection in those areas via their black sacks.

He added: “There are 12 waste collection authorities in Essex, with the county being responsible for all waste disposal.

“Of those 12 authorities only three still collect weekly – one of which is Tendring. With residents’ co-operation this will reduce to two authorities in January/February 2019.”

Residents have previously criticised Tendring Council the authority after it stopped collecting low-grade plastics, such as yoghurt pots, in 2012.

Mr Talbot said he has faced questions from residents as to why the district doesn’t collect all plastic.

“I agree with the questioners and did ask for this to be investigated,” he said.

“Because mixed plastic, if collected, has to be sorted by hand into different classes the cost of this was around £800,000 – not something I could pursue.”

Mr Talbot said extending the contracts with Veolia for a further seven years would be “affordable” for the district.

But Clacton resident Maureen Bartram said: “Wheelie bins are unsightly. I have seen a lot of places with wheelie bin lined up – it’s crazy the room they take up. Eventually the wheels fall off and all plastic things break up.”

But reader Terence Sanders said: “I agree with the use of wheelie bins, mainly because of the mess left by seagulls and other animals.

“My wife, who uses a wheelchair is always clearing up rubbish as we walk our dog.”

To take part in the consultation, visit