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SHDC says waste service has seen "significant improvements" since it was taken in house

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SHDC says waste service has seen "significant improvements" since it was taken in house

The waste and recycling service in the South Hams has "seen significant improvements in performance since the service successfully came back in-house".

The waste and recycling service in the South Hams has seen "significant improvements in performance since the service successfully came back in-house on 3 October" according to South Hams District Council.

In July, the decision was made to bring the services in-house, so that the council could "do everything in its power" to provide a "stable and reliable" waste and recycling collection service for the residents of the district.

Almost nine weeks since the transfer back at the start of October, the council now says it is now completing all collection rounds as currently scheduled and reduced the number of reported missed collections by around 75%.

A spokesperson said: "There is still a long way to go, but these are all steps in the right direction to provide South Hams residents with the service they deserve in the long term." 

Cllr Keith Baldry, South Hams Executive Member for the Environment, said: “We have successfully taken back in-house the waste service. Enormous credit should go to the officers who have done so. They have worked extremely hard to achieve what we have achieved.

“This is a far better result than I expected. It is a great achievement, what has been done so far. We went from a situation where we were regularly failing under the previous regime to collect people’s waste and recycling. We’ve now reached a situation where it is extremely rare for us to fail.

“That happened from day one of taking the service back in-house. It has been a successful transfer. That is due to the tremendous hard work of the team. It is a success story of which the team should be enormously proud.

“We’ve achieved that, but there’s a long way to go. Our teams are continuing the hard work to improve the consistency and efficiency of the service, but these aren’t easy fixes. They take time. After these first steps though, I am positive that with the team we have, both on the ground and behind the scenes, we will get there.”

A report on the progress being made was presented to the council’s Executive on 1 December. It noted that as well as the household waste and recycling collections, other aspects of the service have seen improvements too.

Since the transfer, fly-tips are being clearer more quickly. The public toilet cleaning schedule has been maintained, and processes have begun to deploy the street cleaning sweepers.

Speaking at the Executive meeting, Cllr Bernard Taylor, South Hams District Council Vice Chairman, said: “I’d like to congratulate the team on what they’ve done. It’s nice to open up the computer and not get a load of complaints from residents.

"Talking to the drivers when they come around, they’re delighted because they’re being listened to. They’re happy doing what they do.”

One of the most significant pieces of work to ensure continued improvements is the review of collection rounds across the district – this is due to take place next year.



User comments

1 comment
The Garden Refuse Joke
What a load of rubbish. Nothing has changed as far as I am concerned. The problem over the last 18 months - 2 years has been the very limited/no-collection of garden waste. That still continues with no collections and will do so until the "new" garden waste service starts in the Spring which will require residents to pay an additional £50 per year on top of their Council Tax to have the collection. Time will tell if that will work in the future. As far as the Officers doing such a wonderful job now, if they had done their job using the Company they had employed, we wouldn't be in this situation now.
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