brown bin

Harrogate Council consider charges for green waste collection

7 October 2015

Harrogate Borough Council is to consider changes to its garden waste service, which could see it reverting to an optional chargeable service from 2017.

Currently the council is only able to offer a free kerbside wheeled bin collection for garden waste to approximately 60% of residential properties in the district, with other residents having to purchase disposable garden waste bags.  The proposed new service would eventually see all suitable properties being able to have a garden waste wheeled bin for an annual fee of £39.

Full details of the changes are still to be decided, and the Council are planning to carry out a public consultation on its preferred option that would mean:

  • A wheeled bin garden waste service to be offered to all suitable properties in the district
  • The council could respond to demand for new properties to be added to the scheme, and fulfil demand for additional capacity from existing users
  • Only those residents who choose to receive the service would pay for it
  • All the garden waste collected would be recycled
  • Subsidised compost bins will be offered to those residents who do not want to participate

Revenue generated would support other environmental initiatives such as an expansion of the kerbside recycling scheme to include more materials that can be collected.
Harrogate Borough Council’s Cabinet will consider a report on proposed changes to the service on Wednesday 14 October.


Councillor Michael Harrison, Cabinet Member for the Environment, Waste Reduction and Recycling, who oversees the waste collection service said:

Since introducing our kerbside garden waste recycling collection service we have seen a huge reduction in the amount of waste sent to landfill.  However, we have an anomaly whereby some residents either have no service, or are having to buy green garden waste bags which go straight to landfill, whilst other residents receive a superior wheeled bin garden waste recycling service at no charge.

This situation will only get worse as the district grows, as there is no realistic prospect of rolling out the wheeled bin service in its current format to any more properties.  Introducing a charge will enable the Council to respond to increasing demand, but ensure only those residents who want to use the service pay for it.  In addition, the revenue generated will give the Council flexibility to invest in our other kerbside recycling schemes, which could see items such as brown cardboard, additional plastics and tetra paks being collected.

A public consultation will allow residents to have their say on the plans for the garden waste service.  Residents will be kept fully informed should the decision be made to introduce any changes to the service. Any changes would not be introduced before summer 2017.


It is anticipated that a public consultation will run between the 19 October and 22 November, and be available on the council’s website at

Paper copies of the questionnaire will also be available from Emma McIntosh, Engagement Officer at Harrogate Borough Council.  Telephone (01423) 500600 ext 58095 or e-mail


  1. The cost o this service is outrageous and is a reflection of the bad management of the current council. There has never been a proper system for recycling in Harrogate and why should hard pressed ratepayers have to pay even more for a service which will not even exist. Why can we no longer recycle cardboard which should be the easiest material to recycle? Why did it take the council a long time to sort out a system for recycling plastic? I require answers to these questions. We should be embracing this chance to do something for the environment. Instead we are letting it slip through our fingers as usual.

    David Etchells

  2. In other areas the council’s have provided wheeled bins,for the recycling of tins and plastics etc . As when it’s windy, it blows all over the street and those small black boxes get full ever so quickly . Is this something the Harrogate Council is looking into?

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