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EXCLUSIVE: Anger as green bag waste collection is 'TOO HEAVY' for 'weedy' Birmingham City Council bin men but light enough for Sutton Coldfield granny Jill Brown, 79 to lift

By Sutton Coldfield Observer  |  Posted: March 14, 2014

By Nick Horner

  • ‘TOO HEAVY’ for a Birmingham City Council bin man but not too heavy for 79-year-old grandmother Jill Brown of Sutton Coldfield.

  • Three bags half-full..... Weedy council bin men couldn’t lift these green waste bags but 79-year-old granny Jill could.

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AN angry 79-year-old grandmother from Sutton Coldfield said she was ‘flabbergasted’ after weedy bin men refused to take bags of garden waste she had carried but they deemed were ‘too heavy’.

Jill Brown from Elwyn Road near Sutton Park put five bags of waste out this Monday (March 10) – her second lot under Birmingham City Council’s new paid-for scheme – but was astonished to find three bags containing ‘weeds and plant debris’ had been left as they were deemed too weighty for council bin men.

Jill aged 79 and her husband Brian, 81, were taken aback when they looked at a note pushed through their door which said: “SORRY We did not empty your green recycling bin because *TOO HEAVY*.”

The words ‘Too Heavy’ have been handwritten on to the note and added to the printed reasons for refusing collection – none of which have been ticked.

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Jill said she and her husband, both pensioners, pay £30 for 60 green waste bags and were shocked when three were left. “I only half filled the bags at most and they were OK for me to lift,” said Jill. “I was flabbergasted when I saw the note saying they left them as they were too heavy.

“We want to know what we are paying for.

“My husband Brian was angry when he read it. He said, ‘So, they were nor too heavy for octogenarian pensioners but our fragile Birmingham Council employees can’t manage them. Perhaps they should get a job delivering newspapers and make way for some proper men?’”

Exasperated Jill, who has now taken the bags to the tip in Norris Way, was also concerned at the cost of the new service having already used 10 of her 60 bag allocation. On the council’s website the fee is billed as an ‘annual fee’.

“We are not to the end of March yet and I have already used 10,” she said. “If we want 60 more we have to pay £30 again. We are only pensioners!”

Green waste is due to be collected every other week under the new paid for scheme between February and November.

Read more from Sutton Coldfield Observer

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  • CherylMeehan  |  March 14 2014, 11:39AM

    She should have left the bags & made them come back & collect them . In the height of summer I regulary have 8-10 bags to collect & since the green bag scheme has started I have never been to the tip, but now have 1 bin which I have filled to the top twice already. The whole point was to keep cars away from the tip but now there will be more flytipping & garden bonfires from people who are not prepared to pay the fee. I can understand people with small gardens not being too fussed, but lots of us will easily use at least 60 bags over the summer without being able to use our own green bags to supplement the collection. What about the people who don't have access to a vehicle to get to the tip, they are going to be penalised by having to pay for extra bags or 2 bins.

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