Reigate bin collectors say Jubilee bunting would cause safety hazard
"JOBSWORTH" bin men have been blamed for ruining the jubilee spirit, after they refused to collect rubbish from a street because there was bunting up.
Residents living in Deerings Road, Reigate, had enjoyed the bank holiday weekend and celebrated with a colourful Jubilee street party.
But on Thursday last week, with bins full to the brim of post-party waste, council rubbish collectors refused to drive down the street saying the bunting would prevent them from collecting the waste safely.
Adrian Webb, 47, a communications head and Deerings Road resident, said: "The party was a fantastic, lovely occasion and some of us had put bunting up. There was karaoke and cakes and children singing. It was just great.
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"For the lorry to turn up and effectively turn around is not in the Jubilee spirit at all. I'm guessing the bin men were worried they might damage property if they drove down but this bunting was loosely held up at best.
"A quick knock on the door would have fixed this – I'm sure we could have quickly taken it down. I understand it would be hard for them if they just drove down and ended up pulling down someone's ornamental cherry tree but that wouldn't have been a problem.
"And now I still have a bin full of rubbish left over from the party which won't be collected until next Thursday I assume. It just seems very jobsworth."
Neighbour Barbara Peters agreed, and said she didn't see what the problem was. She said: "I don't see why they couldn't have driven down. I was a bit surprised – it would have taken two to three minutes to take the bunting down.
"We were lucky – my husband heard them at the end of the road on Monday and just took our bin down to be emptied."
A council spokeswoman admitted the bin men had refused to go down the road. She said: "If bunting is hanging across the street lower than the height of our refuse collection vehicles we are unlikely to be able to get in to collect waste safely.
"We cannot drive through it at the risk of pulling it down and damaging property. Our drivers will make a professional judgement whether they are able to access a street safely or not.
"If we have been unable to access a street, we will try again on the next scheduled collection day."
The bunting has since been taken down by residents.