TWO LOCAL councillors are demanding an inquiry into why thousands of Saddleworth households where left a month without refuse and recycling collections.
John McCann, Saddleworth South and Garth Harkness, Saddleworth North, say collections did not happen over the festive period causing problems for residents.
Cllr McCann said: “Most properties in Saddleworth have refuse collected and recycled on Tuesdays.
“With both Christmas Day and New Year’s Day falling on a Tuesday this year alternative arrangements should have been made by Oldham council for the general black waste bins as they were on December 29 for the green bins food and garden waste.”
Cllr Harkness said: “With no general rubbish (black bin) and paper and cardboard (blue bin) collection between December 18 and January 15, thousands of residents have been overwhelmed with all the extra Christmas wrappings and nowhere to store the huge quantities for a month.”
Cllr McCann added: “For some residents cans, bottles and plastic bottles (brown bins) were collected on January 8 for the first time since December 11.
“Refuse collectors have struggled to get round with the huge month long backlog. The Christmas schedule must be reviewed for future years.”
Cllr Jean Stretton, Cabinet member for Neighbourhoods and Devolved Services, said: “Residents received a new collection calendar in spring last year highlighting days affected over the Christmas period and when collections would take place.
“The information was also communicated via our social media, the council website and articles and advertisements in the local press.
“We made provision for additional collections of green waste (food/garden) on Saturday, December 29 so organic waste would still receive a weekly collection.
“The majority of residents heavily support the recycling services and as the available bin capacity for households is now four times what it previously, relatively few residents have reported this as an issue.
“Recycling by the residents has saved considerable cost by sending reduced levels of waste to landfill.
“We apologise if anyone has been inconvenienced but all additional waste and recycling will be collected on the next scheduled collection day or alternatively you can make use of our household waste recycling centre at Arkwright Street in Oldham.”