Toggle menu

Garden Waste Collection: Your Questions Answered

Frequently asked questions about our Garden Waste Collection service


When does the 2021/22 Garden Waste Collection Service start?

The 2021/22 garden waste collection service starts on 30 August 2021. To make sure your subscription is processed in time for the start of the service period, please sign up by 26 August 2021.

Subscription stickers will usually be delivered within 14 days of your subscription being processed, however, as long as you have successfully subscribed before 26 August 2021 you can place your green bin(s) out for collection, even without the sticker(s) displayed for your first collection only.

If you already have a Direct Debit set up for this service, you do not have to complete the subscription process again this year.

 


I already have an active Direct Debit for this service, what do I need to do?

Please note: if you are a current subscriber and have an active Direct Debit for this service, you do not have to complete the subscription process again this year.

Unless you cancel your Direct Debit, your renewal will be processed automatically (following notification of the amount and payment date) and in time for the start of the subscription period.

Your new subscription sticker(s) for your green bin(s) will be sent to you automatically as part of this process.

 


How much does it cost?

The subscription period runs from 30 August 2021 to 28 August 2022.

There has been no price increase again this year. We have reduced the subscription fee for each bin by £4 for 2021/22, as a one-off goodwill gesture following the temporary suspension of the service in January and July 2021.

The subscription charges for the 2021/22 collection service are:

Subscription Charges
Subscription Type

Subscription Charge (per bin)

Service charge for 1st green bin (existing subscription renewals and first-time subscribers)

£46

Service charge for renewal of each current 2nd to 5th additional bins

(This is for existing subscription renewals only where the one-off set-up payment has already been made in a previous subscription year)

£36

Charge for each new additional 2nd to 5th bin (please note you can have a total of 5 green bins per household)

£63

made up as follows:
£36 for the service charge and £27 for the one-off set-up payment

Payment for the 2021/22 subscription period is by Direct Debit (which shall be a single payment for the full subscription charge in respect of the forthcoming service period).

We have listed some examples of payment calculations, below:

  • The charge for 1 subscription is £46.
  • If you are renewing 2 subscriptions, the charge is £82 (£46 for first green bin plus £36 for the additional bin; the one-off set-up payment(s) has already been made in a previous subscription year).
  • If you are new to the service and would like 2 subscriptions, the charge is £109 (£46 for the first green bin plus £63 for the additional bin).
  • If you would like more subscriptions than you currently have (up to a total of 5 bins per household), the charge for each new additional subscription is £63.

The green bin(s) remain the Council's property at all times.

 


How do I sign up for a garden waste collection?

If you are a current subscriber and pay by Direct Debit, you do not need to sign up again this year. We will be contacting you to see if you want to make any changes to your subscription as part of the renewal process and to provide advanced notice of the date that payment will be taken for the 2021/22 subscription period.

Payment for the 2021/22 subscription period is by Direct Debit (which shall be a single payment for the full subscription charge in respect of the forthcoming service period).

If you do not currently pay for your subscription by Direct Debit, or are a new subscriber, you will be able to subscribe to the 2021/22 Subscription Period (starting on 30 August 2021) from 28 July 2021. Regardless of when you subscribe the charges remain fixed.

You will need to complete our online subscription form including a Direct Debit mandate. To complete the Direct Debit mandate, all you'll need are the details of your bank, or building society, account number and sort code. You can see a short video we put together showing just how simple it is on our Garden Waste Collection page.

You will receive an email acknowledgement once you have successfully subscribed, and further emails to confirm the details of your Direct Debit mandate and advance notice of the date that payment will be taken.

To make sure your subscription is processed in time for the start of the service period, please sign up by 26 August 2021. Subscription stickers will usually be delivered within 14 days of your subscription being processed, however as long as you have successfully subscribed before the 26 August 2021 you can place your green bin(s) out for collection, even without the sticker(s) displayed for your first collection only.

 


How do I subscribe if I don't have internet access at home?

If you do not have your own internet access, a smartphone, or friends or family members who can help you with this, you can complete the subscription process by:

A member of the team will be able to set up a Direct Debit for you and provide further assistance where possible. 

Please note: our phone lines are very busy at this time and we would prefer to prioritise helping vulnerable residents. Residents are kindly requested to only call if they cannot find the information they require online.

 


I cannot set up a Direct Debit due to a valid reason, what do I do?

If you are unable to set up a Direct Debit due to a valid reason, and you do not have any friends or family members who can help you with this, you can contact us on 01635 503828, by email or by visiting our Council Offices, Market Street, Newbury, where a member of our team will discuss the situation and suggest potential options. 

Please note: our phone lines and emails are very busy at this time and we would prefer to prioritise helping vulnerable residents.

 


What is a Direct Debit and what are the benefits of this type of payment method?

A Direct Debit is an instruction from you to your bank or building society. It authorises the organisation you want to pay (eg the Council) to collect payments from your account. Payment will only be collected after you have been given advance notice of the amount and date of collection.

You will need details of your bank or building society account number and sort code in order to do this.

All payments made by Direct Debit are protected by the Direct Debit Guarantee this means that:

  1. Each year you will receive notice from us, at least 10 working days in advance to notify you of the amount that will be taken and the date on which it will be taken.
  2. You can get a full and immediate refund from your bank for any payment taken in error.
  3. You can cancel your Direct Debit at any time before the payment is due to be made, or to stop any future payments being made.

Banks do not charge you for setting up a Direct Debit, however, please ensure there is enough money in your account to cover the payment on the payment date, as your bank or building society may charge you if payment cannot be made.

Some of the additional benefits of paying for the garden waste collection service by Direct Debit are:

  • It will save you time in the long run, as setting up a Direct Debit now will mean that you don't have to spend time each year making a payment or completing a new subscription request
  • It's safe and secure; the security of your data is covered under data protection and privacy laws including GDPR - you can read our privacy policy, here
  • Moving customers to Direct Debit will make the Council more efficient, freeing up time and resources for other priorities that could benefit West Berkshire residents - savings in administration costs can help the Council to keep the garden waste charges at an affordable level for our residents.

Lots more information about Direct Debits can be found on the Direct Debit website.

 


How do I set up a Direct Debit? 

There are 3 simple steps to setting up a Direct Debit.

Step 1

Subscribe here to tell us your subscription requirements and complete the online Direct Debit mandate.

When completing the mandate you will need to:

  • Check your name and address details are correct
  • Provide us with:
    • your account number and sort code
    • The name(s) on the account

Step 2

We will send you advance notice of the amount to be taken and when we will collect payment. Please check these details are correct and contact us at gardenwaste@westberks.gov.uk straight away if you need to query anything.

Step 3

Relax. Apart from making sure you have enough money in your account when the payment is due, there is nothing more for you to do.

You can watch a short instructional video of the process on our Garden Waste Collection page.

 


Where do I find my bank account number and sort code?

You can typically find your 8-digit account number and 6-digit sort code on your bank statements and on the front of your bank account debit card. You may also find them on your cheque book or by logging into your online bank account. 

 


Can I pay by instalments?

You cannot pay by instalments. 

When you pay by Direct Debit, a Direct Debit mandate will only be required on your initial subscription to the service. Payment will be a single transaction for the total fixed subscription charge due in respect of the whole service period.

Subsequent subscription periods commence around the start of September each year (unless otherwise notified) and payment and renewal of subsequent subscription periods paid by Direct Debit will be automatic. Information regarding future subscription periods will be sent to you in advance and (unless you cancel your Direct Debit instruction) your subscription for that forthcoming subscription period will be automatically renewed.

 


Can I complete the subscription without an email address? 

No, when you subscribe to our garden waste collection service we will ask for your email address so that we can provide you with instant confirmation that your subscription has been successful. We will also use it to send you confirmation of your Direct Debit instruction and advance notice of when payment will be taken. We will contact you via email regarding the renewal process for subsequent subscription periods.

If you do not have an email address, you can easily create one. You can find details of some popular, free email account providers, including how to set these up, below:

You can also find useful information on how to set up an email account, along with other email essentials on the Age UK website.

You can find information on how to deal with unwanted emails, known as "spam", on the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) website.

 


What is the cancellation policy?

You have the right to cancel your subscription within 21 days without giving any reason.

The cancellation period will expire after 21 days from the day you subscribe. If you cancel within 21 days from subscription, we will make a full refund. This does not affect your statutory rights or the Direct Debit guarantee.

If you cancel your subscription, your green bin will not be emptied if it contains garden waste.  

No refund will be given if you decide to stop using the service, in whole or in part, for any reason outside of the 21-day cancellation period, or outside of the terms of the Direct Debit guarantee.

For full information, please refer to the Icon for pdf Terms and Conditions [546.93KB] and Cancellation Policy.

 


Will there be a part-year charge for 2021/22?

No, there will be not be a part-year charge for 2021/22.

A part-year charge was only included for the first year the subscription charge was introduced. The service was new and we wanted to give a part-year option at a reduced price for residents who may have missed the initial launch. As the scheme is now established, we will not be continuing with a part-year charge.

You can subscribe at any time until 30 June 2022 for this subscription period. Regardless of when you subscribe, the charges remain fixed as detailed above.

 


Will there be help for residents who receive benefits?

We do not offer concessions.

 


Can I share a bin with my neighbour?

Yes you can, however, please note that any agreement made between neighbours to share green bins is a private arrangement. Please ensure the bin you share with your neighbour has the sticker clearly visible. It is up to neighbours to decide who will purchase the subscription which will only be linked to one property (the subscriber's property). The green bin will be collected from outside the subscriber's property.

As the subscriber, you will be responsible for compliance with the terms and conditions of the garden waste service, even if you share the green bin with your neighbours. This is because our agreement is with you.

 


How will you know who has paid?

Once we have received your subscription (or your Direct Debit renewal has been processed), we will send you a subscription sticker for your green bin. Please ensure the sticker is clearly visible on the back of the bin (handle side), as this will identify that you have paid for the service. 

Your property details will also be added to a database, used by our contractor, that informs collection crews which households have subscribed to the service.

The sticker colour will be brown for 2021/22 subscription.

 


Do I need to remove my grey 2020/21 bin sticker?

Please try to remove your grey bin sticker before you place your new 2021/22 sticker on your bin, once that subscription period has ended. If you cannot remove your old sticker, please place your new brown subscription sticker above or below it.

 


I have recently subscribed to the garden waste service but haven't received my sticker?

Your subscription sticker(s) for your green bin(s) will usually be delivered within 14 days of your subscription being processed and stickers will be sent by second class post. If it has been more than 14 days since you subscribed to the service and you have not received your sticker(s), please let us know: customerservices@westberks.gov.uk.

Subscription stickers will usually be delivered within 14 days of your subscription being processed, however, as long as you have successfully subscribed before 26 August 2021 you can place your green bin(s) out for collection, even without the sticker(s) displayed for your first collection only.

 


I have already subscribed to the 2021/22 service, how do I order an additional green bin?

If you wish to order additional green bins for the 2021/22 service that starts on the 30 August 2021, please complete the online subscription form and select the relevant option when prompted.

 


If I decide not to renew my subscription, will you still empty my green bin after 27 August 2021?

We will continue to collect food waste from your green bin (except for communal properties) until such time that we may be able to provide an alternative collection service for food waste, but will not empty bins containing garden waste if you have not subscribed to the 2021/22 garden waste collection service.

If your bin is not emptied for this reason, then you will need to remove the garden waste from the bin before it will be emptied again on the next scheduled collection day.

 


I don't currently have a green bin, can I still sign up for a garden waste collection?

Yes, you can subscribe here for a garden waste collection. Once you have signed up, we will deliver a green bin and subscription sticker to you.

 


As a subscriber what can I put in my green bin?

We will only collect garden waste (of a type specified by the Council) that is contained in the green bin supplied by West Berkshire Council.

We will collect grass cuttings, prunings, small twigs and branches, hedge trimmings and leaves, plants and weeds, cut flowers and fallen fruit. You can put food waste in your green bin. 

You can find full details of what can go in your green bin on our Garden Waste Collection page.

 


I have signed up to the Garden Waste Service but my green bin has not been emptied?

The subscription period runs from 30 August 2021 to 28 August 2022.

If you have signed up to the service, you will need to make sure your subscription sticker is clearly visible on the back of the bin (handle side). Our collection crews will not empty a green bin, containing garden waste, if a sticker is not visible. However, as long as you have successfully subscribed before the 26 August 2021, you can place your green bin(s) out for collection even without the sticker(s) displayed, for your first collection only.

If you have a subscription sticker on your bin and it has not been emptied, the collection crew should have left a notice explaining if there is an issue with your waste or green bin.

Some of the common issues include:

  • The bin is too heavy - although you may be able to move your bin, the bin lift on the back of the collection vehicle may not be able to lift it safely; please remove some material from the bin before your next collection.
  • The bin contains the wrong material - please make sure you only put the right materials in your green bin; please check what can go in your green bin and remove any incorrect materials before your next collection.

You can find more information regarding missed collections on our Missed Bin Collection webpage.

We retain the right to refuse to empty a bin if it contains the wrong types of materials, listed here. In order for the collection service to be resumed you will be required to remove the wrong types of materials from the bin(s) before your next scheduled collection date.

 


If I move house, will you refund the fee?

There are no refunds outside of the cancellation period.

If you move house within the West Berkshire district, please Tell Us You've Changed Your Name or Address and we will usually be able to transfer your subscription to your new address and send you a new sticker. Do not take your green bin to your new property.

When you leave your old address, please remove the subscription sticker(s) from your green bin(s) and dispose of it, leaving all bins at your old property. All bins remain the property of West Berkshire Council.  

 


Who is this service for?

This service is only for residential properties, places of worship and village halls that dispose of household waste.  

This service does not cover:

  • Premises which are occupied by a club, society or any associations of persons in which activities are conducted for the benefit of the members (eg sports pavilions and social clubs)
  • Village halls, other halls or residential properties that are managed by a commercial landscaper or gardener. 

Occupants of such premises should seek a commercial waste service for the disposal of such garden waste.

 


Don't I already pay for my garden waste collection in my council tax?

Council tax contributes towards the costs of running Council services but changes to Government funding means that we cannot afford to offer this service without making a separate charge. You can find out more about how the Council is funded and where the money is spent on our council spending webpage.

Council tax is a tax which is payable towards all services provided by West Berkshire Council, the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service and the Police and Crime Commissioner, whether you use the services or not. As such, you are not entitled to a refund if you do not sign up to the garden waste collection service.

 


Do I have to subscribe to garden waste collections?

This is an opt-in, paid-for-service. You do not have to subscribe to this service if you do not want your garden waste collected. From 30 August 2021 if you have not subscribed, your green bin will not be emptied if it contains garden waste. 

You can continue to place food waste in the green bin even if you don't have a subscription (except for communal properties) until such time that we may be able to provide a separate weekly collection service for food waste.

Please continue to use the green bin for your food waste recycling.  

You can still recycle your garden waste for free by composting it at home, or by taking it to one of our our recycling centres at Padworth Lane or Newtown Road, Newbury.

 


How will you use my personal information?

We will collect personal information for the purpose of processing your application and providing the garden waste collection service. This information will be held in a secure manner. We won't use your information for any other purpose without your permission. We won't hold it longer than we need to.

We will treat any personal information by which you can be identified (ie name, address, email etc) in accordance with the provisions of the Data Protection Act 2018.

You can review our Privacy Notice, here.

 


Will you take extra garden waste placed beside the bin?

No, all garden waste must be placed inside the green bin. You can increase the number of subscriptions you have at any time during the subscription period by completing our online subscription form, and selecting the relevant option when prompted.

There is a maximum of 5 green bins per household.

 


How will you stop residents who don't have garden waste collections putting their garden waste in my paid-for green bin?

We can't. We suggest keeping the green bin on your property where possible, in a location where it is not easy for others to put waste in your bin. Following collections you should move your bin back onto your property as soon as possible.

 


My green bin has gone missing or is damaged, will I have to pay to get another one?

No, there is currently no charge for replacement bins. You can order a replacement, here.

 


What about leaves or debris from my neighbour's overhanging trees?

When leaves, seeds or small twigs leave a tree naturally, they no longer have a legal owner. If these fall into your garden, they become your responsibility to remove.

 


I live in a communal property where we attend to our own gardens/communal gardens. Can I subscribe?  

Please contact Customer Services and a Waste Officer will get in touch with you to discuss your needs.

Please note: if you are approved for garden waste collections, the subscription, including payment, will need to be made under an individual property address. The subscriber will then be responsible for the green bin.

Bins containing the wrong types of materials will not be emptied, and such materials would need to be removed to allow collections to continue. No refunds will be provided outside the cancellation period.

 


There isn't enough space to type in the full account holders name into the Direct Debit mandate, what do I do?

Don't worry if you can't type the full names of all account holders into the direct debit mandate. We only need one account holder name - this can include just the initial for the first name, but must include the whole surname.

 


I am not the only person who can authorise Direct Debits on my account, can I submit a Direct Debit mandate by myself?

Yes, this will only be an issue if you require all account holders to authorise Direct Debits on your account. If you are unsure please contact your bank to confirm.

 

Share this page

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share by email