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Refuse and recycling crews in Three Rivers win praise for clearance in snow
Award winning refuse and recycling crews in Three Rivers have been hailed by councillors after overcoming snow and ice to maintain a near total service.
Crews started work early and in bitterly cold conditions and collected between 98 and 99 per cent of their normal route.
Crews also returned to collect on missed roads within days and gritter was seconded to clear the road ahead of the lorry to allow it.
Their efforts did not go unnoticed by councillors who unanimously voiced their support for the staff at the council’s executive committee meeting last night (Monday, January 28).
Council leader Councillor Ann Shaw said: "Our staff have done the most fantastic job through ice and snow.
"Some of them must have been leaving home at about 4am to come to work."
Conservative leader Councillor Chris Hayward added: "The communication was excellent, we knew every single day where they hadn’t been able to reach."
Earlier this month the environmental protection team at Three Rivers was one of only four authorities to receive an award from Letsrecycle.com.
The recycling rate in the district is 64 per cent of all waste collected - placing the council in the top 5 per cent of authorities nationally.
Councillor Phil Brading, portfolio holder for public services and health said of the award: "This is a great reward for our environmental protection team. They work hard to ensure that all waste is kept to a minimum in the district.
"In light of the recent figures showing that in Britain we throw away up to 50% of our food, I cannot praise out team highly enough but we can only achieve these results with the help and co-operation of the residents of Three Rivers."
Despite the award, during Monday’s meeting councillors were told a bid to secure funds from the Department for Communities and Local Government’s weekly collection fund had been rejected.
Changes in legislation also mean the council must remove all cardboard waste from brown bins in the district by January 2015 when the current contract with West London Composting ends.
The lack of outside funding means the council will have to cover the currently unknown cost of service changes from resources.
Councillor Shaw said: "It is something we do not have a choice about and is going to involve us in considerable expense."