Weekly bin collections to return

By politics.co.uk staff

Weekly bin collections are set to return after ministers came up with £250 million of funding ahead of the Conservative party conference.

Communities and local government secretary Eric Pickles said there would be "no excuse" for councils not to return to weekly collections after the shift takes place next April.

The Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs was thought to have blocked the move at the time of the government's waste review earlier this year because of fears it could hit recycling rates.

But communities secretary Eric Pickles is thought to have secured No 10's approval after making the weekly collections support scheme funding conditional on recycling improvements.

"Most people would prefer to see a weekly collection," Mr Pickles told the Today programme.

"What we'll be saying to local authorities is if your population want to have a weekly collection, we're only prepared to fund that if we can see an improvement in recycling, an improvement in efficiency and an improvement in procurement."

The news will be welcomed by delegates at the Tory party conference, which begins in Manchester on Sunday. The Conservatives had pledged to restore weekly bin collections in their manifesto before the 2010 general election.

Labour had introduced fortnightly collections in a bid to increase recycling. Britain still sends more household waste to landfill than any other country in the European Union.