Mark Whitehead 25 June 2018

Councils making £74m a year from garden waste charges

More than half of UK councils have introduced charges for garden waste collection totalling almost £74m a year, according to new research.

Freedom of Information responses gathered from more than 300 councils by BBC One's Rip Off Britain programme found that 172 now charged to pick up garden waste.

But the Local Government Association said councils had been forced to introduce charges because of cuts to funding by central government.

The total charges for green waste collection had risen from £42.3m in 2014-15 to £56.9m in 2015-16, according to the programme, representing an average cost to residents of £42.40 a year.

Presenter Gloria Hunniford said: 'While clearly some of our viewers are unhappy their garden waste is no longer taken away for free, the results of our survey show it's unlikely that's going to change any time soon.

'And with further councils set to introduce such charges, even more of us will need to get used to paying to have our grass clippings taken away.'

A spokesman for the LGA said: 'Councils in England face an overall funding gap that will exceed £5bn by 2020.

'Some councils were able to provide free garden waste services when they were first introduced but are now having to charge to reflect the growing cost of providing a collection service.'

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