Star readers call for return of weekly bin collections after surge in Sheffield rat population

Readers of The Star have called on Sheffield Council to increase the number of bin collections for household waste amid fears the biweekly cycle may be leading to an explosion in the rat population.

Monday, 25th January 2021, 12:30 pm

Earlier this month, The Star reported that ‘millions’ of rats were ‘running rampant’ across South Yorkshire in the weeks after Christmas due to a ‘perfect storm’ of contributory factors.

Pest control experts have suggested that the extra rubbish and food waste generated by households over Christmas were providing rats with everything they needed to survive.

And they also said that the rat population in the county was already around 25 per cent higher than normal before Christmas due to the coronavirus lockdowns and poor waste management.

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Star readers have called for the council to bring back weekly bin collections after a surge in the rat population.

However, as well as these factors, Star readers suggested that the council’s biweekly household waste collections may also be contributing to the problem.

The biweekly collections were brought in by the Labour council in 2012, but many of those commenting on our Facebook page have been calling for the weekly cycle to be brought back.

Amanda Barber said: “I blame the council, it should have never changed the bin collection to every two weeks. It should be weekly for household and every two weeks for plastics and cardboard.”

Taz Horrell said: “We had the rat infestation since they changed the bin collections to every two weeks. We never saw them before but now there are lots of rats in the city.”

AJ Montana said: “Have more frequent bin collection days. Stop making us do the council’s job. What am I paying council tax for?”

And Sharon Wiles said: “Maybe if the council went back to emptying black bins weekly it would help. It’s just not often enough every two weeks and some people end up with extra rubbish waiting until the bins are empty.”

The Government have committed to roll out separate food waste collections in England by 2023 and to ban it from landfill by 2030.

However, the Local Government Association - who represent councils in the UK - have said the commitments will be difficult to fulfil without extra financial support.

Sheffield Council were not immediately available for comment.

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a digital subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Nancy Fielder, editor.