Waste collection idea slammed as rubbish

An 80-year-old woman living in one of the most remote areas of the region this week slammed Scottish Borders Council officers’ suggestions for her waste management arrangements.

Thursday, 14th November 2019, 9:08 am
Jennifer Ellender outside her home at Heriot

Jennifer Ellender, who lives up a private track on the outskirts of Heriot, says she can no longer carry heavy bags of rubbish the 400 yards between her house and her arranged bin uplift area.

She said: “I’ve had a fall recently and, although I can walk with a limp, I can’t carry heavy bags.

“There’s no way I can trail the rubbish up the track, which is in very poor condition.

“I don’t have anything to do with my neighbours and there’s no one else who could take the rubbish for me.”

She claims the single track, created by an ex-minister who lived along it, has been ruined by occasional visits by an oil delivery lorry.

She said: “It was never meant to be for vehicles that size. It’s just crumpled under the weight.

“There’s no room for lorries to turn either, so the oil tanker and the coal lorry, which delivers coal to me, have to reverse up the track.

“However, the council informed me that as the track is longer than the limit for their vehicles reversing, there was no way for their refuse lorries to reach my house.”

Jennifer has until now been carrying her rubbish to the village gate, where it is uplifted, but that is no longer an option.

Jennifer, who does not drive, said: “I had a visit from a man from the council, and what he suggested was just ludicrous.

“He asked if I could just get the coalman to take the rubbish back up the track, which I thought was an outrageous suggestion.

“He then offered to put in place a large box at the house where I could put the bags. When I asked what I would do when it was full, he said I would have to arrange for it to be emptied.

“I have spoken to Citizens Advice about it, as well as my MSP, Christine Grahame, but it’s still not been sorted out.”

A spokesman for the council told the Southern that this was an ongoing matter.

He said: “We are unable to comment at this time about this individual situation as it is still under assessment and involves personal data regarding the householder in question.

“An assisted collection service is available upon request.

“Various criteria are assessed as part of this, including consideration of medical conditions and health, as well as specifics of the location concerned, including but not exclusive to distances involved, land androad condition, private or public access and risks, such as the requirement for vehicles to reverse.

“All assisted collection requests are assessed on an individual basis.”