A disabled woman says her bins were not emptied for six weeks following a shake-up of the borough’s bin collections.

Elizabeth de Lange, who lives in Halliwick Road, Muswell Hill, said she had spent hours waiting by her door for binmen to arrive so she could be sure her household waste was collected.

Ms de Lange, who describes herself as a “very senior citizen”, gets help with her bin collections from Barnet Council because of a disability.

But she said the system had been “nothing but a complete mess” since the council made changes to bin rounds in November last year.

Ms de Lange said binmen had previously missed collections for two to three weeks, and recently she had to go for six weeks without having her refuse collected.

She said she had complained to Barnet Council many times via email and telephone, but the people she spoke to had been “evasive” and the problems were not sorted out.

Ms de Lange said: “When they changed the system last November, everything went wrong. They were not collecting as they should have been every week.

“This time I’ve had to wait six weeks for a rubbish collection.

“The binmen never arrive at the same time. I had to sit there waiting to try to catch them – I waited two hours one day.

“I am extremely slow and not in the best of health, and they go by so quickly.

“I should not be sitting there for a couple of hours for these people to come and help me.

“Bluebottles came around my rubbish. I’m afraid that rats could get on top of my bin and tear into it.”

Ms de Lange said she was worried about what would happen during the winter, as she did not feel able to sit by the door waiting for the binmen in the cold weather.

She added: “I am very upset with this. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve spoken to. I said, ‘how many emails does one have to send before you take action?’”

The council faced a deluge of complaints about missed collections after making sweeping changes to bin rounds in November last year.

At the end of January, the council’s environment chief said the council was getting to grips with the problems and there had been a sharp drop in complaints about missed bin rounds.

A Barnet Council spokesperson said: “We always anticipated there would be some level of disruption when we introduced such significant changes to the recycling and waste collections.

“We’re pleased to report that collection rates are now at the same level as they were, before the changes came into effect.

“Different types of waste are collected by separate vehicles. This means they can arrive at different times, ranging from 6am up until the late afternoon. This has always been the case.

“We have raised this particular matter with the relevant team. We would like to reassure the resident concerned that future assisted collections for address will be made, provided the bin is visible and accessible.

“We would ask residents to please check www.barnet.gov.uk/bincollectionupdates for the latest updates to the service, if their bins have not been collected.”



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