COMMENT: Like Acorn Plus, the green waste debate will continue forever

Just as Horsham District Council announced the detail of the paid-for green waste scheme, hundreds of people have come out to voice their opposition to it.

Considering Horsham is the only council in West Sussex to not charge for the service, there may be little that can be done to reverse the decision, but that is not stopping people expressing their views by post, email and on the County Times website this week.

When asked in our online poll ‘Will you be signing up to the £29 garden waste collection charge?’ 31 people (60 per cent) said they would not be signing up and would rather pay up to £5 more council tax.

Positive responses were in the minority with four people (eight per cent) giving a definitive ‘yes, no buts’ response and 14 (27 per cent) said they would be signing up, but would rather pay more council tax. The remaining six per cent were unsure.

When I met the cabinet member responsible for finance with council officers this week, they were quick to assure readers that based on the experience of nearby councils, the scheme will be popular, there would be no increase in fly-tipping or the amount of green waste going to landfill.

But some of those councils cover an area where most people live in reasonable distance from a recycling site.

In the Horsham district there is a north/south divide. The closest site for residents in the South Downs is in Billingshurst, but that is still a good drive away from Steyning, Storrington and Henfield in the south. Hop Oast near Horsham is on hand for people in the north.

Whatever the success of the scheme, at the County Times, we know that the river of stories on waste collection schemes never runs dry. We are here to put forward all sides of this new debate as it unfolds.

By Anna Coe

01403 751206 or @WSCT_Anna on Twitter