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Recycling costs in Brent soar as residents tackle litterbugs

PUBLISHED: 08:00 23 August 2015

Keep Wembley Tidy campaign has grown to 450 member   Pic credit: Angela Blake

Keep Wembley Tidy campaign has grown to 450 member Pic credit: Angela Blake

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The cost of recycling in Brent has been steadily rising while a resident led campaign to clean up Wembley has seen its numbers grow to more than 450 in just a few months.

Chirag Lag, a campaigner for Keep Wembley Tidy, who lives on Scarle Road, Wembley, was one of six residents to tackle littering and flytipping when they launched in March but despite its numbers swelling, so is the cost of recycling.

Costs rose from £8.91million to £10.4m between 2010 and 2014 according to figures obtained by the Financial Times.

Mr Lag said: “It’s really not acceptable. Parts of Wembley have become uninhabitable. You have to live in the area to understand. This isn’t just litter, this isn’t a can that someone has thrown on the road. This is domestic waste; this is traders flouting the confusions on the time collections. I reported a mattress on the bottom of our road. This isn’t a one off, or once a month, this is daily.”

Residents got together earlier this year, knocking on doors to raise awareness bringing the campaign’s numbers to more than 450 people.

Mr Lag added: “There are more caring residents than I thought. We have a road champion who picks up litter and puts in a blue bag while others are responsible for keeping an eye out for litter louts.”

In June Brent councillors agreed to meet the residents. Mr Lag added: “The councillors have accepted the situation and have agreed to work with us. This cannot go on while the costs of recycling are increasing all the time.”

A council spokesman said: “We’re finding that waste costs are going up each year due to the increasing landfill tax set by central government. New homes in the borough and a rising population mean that more waste is being created which the council then has to dispose of.

“Every tonne of waste sent to landfill now costs the council £120, whereas a tonne of good quality recycling is cost neutral. This is why it is so important to recycle in Brent, as not only is it better for the environment, but there is a financial saving for taxpayers too.”

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