Page last updated at 11:47 GMT, Friday, 5 September 2008 12:47 UK

Fury at council's mixed recycling

Recycling box of bottles
Residents have a separate recycling bin for glass bottles

Some residents in west Berkshire say they are furious bin men are mixing rubbish they have separated into different recycling bins.

It comes four months after the introduction of a new recycling scheme, under which householders are asked to put waste into three containers.

The council said it has to use some vehicles with only two containers to ensure all rounds are made on time.

But, it said, all recyclables are still being sent for recycling.

In June, West Berkshire Council introduced new recycling containers - one for paper and card, one for glass - and a green sack for plastic bottles and cans.

I'm not 100% sure now as to whether this waste is being processed properly
Maura Livingstone

Maura Livingstone, from Kintbury, said she has seen the bin men putting both containers and the sack into the same bin lorry.

"I'm very, very angry. I'm an avid recycler. I've been doing that for a number of years. I recycle everything down to batteries and bulbs.

"I'm really annoyed. I didn't think that the whole process was very good with all these different containers.

"Now I'm probably more cynical about what is actually happening to the waste. I'm not 100% sure now as to whether this waste is being processed properly."

The council said it had been struggling to keep up with the collections because the "unprecedented participation" in the new recycling service.

A spokeswoman said a small number of twin-pack recycling vehicles, which mixes some of the recyclables, were being used on a short-term basis to ensure rounds are completed on time.

"They are only operating across a minimum of rounds to support the overall service," she said.

She added that all the material collected for recycling is still re-used - because it is sorted later by the council.

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