Environmental services come home
Councillor Rob Anderson sees off the first of the vans
Slough Borough Council has welcomed the environmental services team back home.
More than 15 years ago, environmental services – including bin collections, street cleaning, grounds and highway maintenance – was contracted out to a private company, but now, in a rarely seen move, the council has brought them back in house.
On 1 December, with X-Factor-style special effects, the new fleet of bin lorries hit the streets of Slough complete with their new livery featuring the town crest.
Councillor Rob Anderson, cabinet member for environment and leisure, saluted the crews as they left the depot as dawn broke.
He said: “We are very excited that this is a new dawn breaking for this vital council service. It was a genuine pleasure to see brand new modern vehicles leaving at first light, fully staffed by our new teams of council workers.
“I am sure people will soon see a difference out on the streets now we have greater control, the ability to be more responsive to local needs and more accountable to residents.”
Update on the first month
On 1 December we mobilised 72 new vehicles and 178 staff across waste collection, street cleansing, grounds maintenance and highways maintenance services.
Business as usual saw us make 270,000 refuse collections and 270,000 recycling collections during December. We now collect green waste all year round on a fortnightly cycle, except two weeks over Christmas, seeing 11,000 green waste collections each week.
Core street cleaning services have been sustained and additional one-off cleans completed. We have added a second large mechanical road sweeper to improve the visual aspect of the borough. The transition to a direct services organisation has seen us better able to support housing teams with dealing with waste and cleansing issues on estates throughout the borough, as we move away from traditional approaches and towards a one stop shop.
Grounds maintenance winter works have been sustained while we have redeveloped our Stoke Road depot and additional works have begun. Additional works include public realm initiatives such as improving our tree stock by removing shoots which appear at the base of tree trunks, and supporting initiatives to see land owners cut back private hedges which are obstructing the public highway.
Future activity will include working with the council’s parks team to improve our parks and attract increased public usage.
Our Highways teams have picked up where Amey left - sustaining the road infrastructure works around the Burnham Railway Station redevelopment and a number of other projects. Winter gritting has been maintained throughout the cold spell and our Chalvey depot has been rearranged to fit our new operational model.
Find out more about the service
You can find out your bin collection days, learn about the green waste scheme and see what you can and cannot recycle on the council's website.
For missed bins you can complete the online form or call 01753 475111 (option 4).