News from South Oxfordshire District Council

Dear Garden Waste customers,

Firstly, please accept our sincere apologies for the disruption to your garden waste service this summer.

We are pleased to share the news that we have agreed a temporary arrangement with Biffa that will enable us to begin collecting garden waste again from 27 September (the first collections in South Oxfordshire will be 4 October).

The well documented national shortage of HGV drivers is still an issue for Biffa, as well as for other council waste collections and many supermarkets, but the temporary arrangement Biffa can provide requires fewer drivers, which means the service can resume sooner.

The temporary arrangement is that fortnightly collections will change to take place every four weeks, but you will be able to leave twice as much garden waste out as normal.

We appreciate this is still not the service you expect from us so we will be extending your subscription this year by three months to make up for the collections that you have missed while the service has been suspended.

We will delay the collection of your next Direct Debit payment by three months – if we have recently informed you that your payment is due to be taken imminently but the payment has not yet come out of your account, the payment will be cancelled, and you will be notified of the revised collection date in due course once your subscription has been amended. If somebody else pays for your garden waste collections, please let them know of this change. If you choose not to continue with the garden waste service when your subscription expires, we’ll continue to empty your brown bin for three months after your subscription was originally due to end.

While we will be reviewing the situation closely on an ongoing basis, we have set an agreed review date with Biffa at the end of October to see if the normal service can resume and we will let you know the outcome of that review.

Your collection day remains the same as before

If your bins are usually emptied on a Monday, for example, your brown bin will still be emptied on a Monday under a new temporary garden waste timetable with your bins emptied once every four weeks, instead of every two weeks.

You can see the temporary timetable, which shows when your four-weekly collection will take place, on our dedicated webpage here southoxon.gov.uk/gardenwastecollectionchanges

Remember, when you put your garden waste bin out while this temporary timetable is in place, you can leave an extra bin’s worth of garden waste out next to your brown bin. The extra garden waste can be put out in cardboard boxes, old compost bags or bin bags (not the very large trade waste bags please).

We will still collect your food waste weekly, and your recycling and rubbish every two weeks as normal.

We want to thank you for your patience and understanding and apologise once again that the service has fallen short of the standards you have come to expect. We hope you feel that the temporary arrangement is a good way of getting the garden waste service up and running sooner rather than later, while Biffa continues to look for ways to address its driver shortage.

Account queries

Please email gardenwaste@southandvale.gov.uk with your name, address and customer ID if you need us to action any of the following

  • Moving house
  • Cancelling your account
  • To order an additional bin
  • If you have a query about your annual invoice

Home Composting

For more information about home composting and purchasing a compost bin please visit the Oxfordshire County Council website.

What happens to your garden waste

Your garden waste is recycled outside using a process called Open Windrows and the end product is sold to local farmers. We only accept garden waste in our brown bins. This means no packaging not even compostable packaging. As the process happens outdoors, packaging of any kind presents a litter issue.

Anyone who is not a garden waste customer can dispose of garden waste at one of Oxfordshire County Council’s Household Waste Recycling Centres. These sites are open but please check their website for opening times and any restrictions, particularly COVID-19 restrictions.

Contact us – Garden waste

01235 422600
(Text phone users add 18001 before dialling)

135 Eastern Avenue
Milton Park
OX14 4SB