A list of the 39 streets where Milton Keynes Council’s rubbish lorries have the most problems collecting food and garden waste has been revealed.
It shows Bletchley, with seven streets, Great Holm with five, and Stony Stratford and Emerson Valley with four, the worst areas where there have been more than five examples in the last 12 months where crews weren’t able to gain access to green bins.
Cllr Dan Gilbert, the Conservative group’s environment and waste spokesperson, who uncovered the figures, said it was a “hidden scandal” affecting hundreds if not thousands of taxpayers.
The total number of “missed collections” has been declining from 440 in two months last summer to 278 in April but Cllr Gilbert is worried that “there may be many more people suffering in silence with sporadic collections from one week to the next”.
“It cannot be right that we have residents paying the same council tax as everyone else but being denied the same level of service.
“MK prides itself on maintaining weekly bin collections, but that’s just not the reality for many residents.”
The council has confirmed to the Conservative group that contractor Serco is looking to get a smaller refuse collection vehicle for some streets which are persistently difficult to get access to.
He added: “I would not want to write off hundreds of affected households as just a tiny percentage. I’d hope the administration can think creatively about how those households can get a decent service like everyone else.”
The Labour council’s cabinet member for public realm, Cllr Emily Darlington, said it was wrong to use the term “missed collection” when the lorry drivers had difficulty getting access to the bins. She said they do attempt to go back to those they couldn’t access first time around.
“Difficult access might mean a car parked badly in the road, or perhaps a new crew is on,” she said.
She added that the council makes more than 450,000 food and garden waste collections every month, and 99.94 per cent of those happen as planned.
“We are proud of MK’s weekly bin, recycling and green waste collections, one of the few councils in the area that still provide a weekly service. Where collections are missed, we endeavour to collect the following day.”
She added: “Instead of issuing press releases to play politics, Cllr Gilbert should spend more time understanding how much better the service is in a Labour-led MK Council versus the surrounding Tory ones.”
The 39 most affected streets are:
Hamilton Lane, Newbury Court, Mossmans Close, Fontwell Drive, Epsom Grove, Archers Wells, and Hazel Grove in Bletchley.
Edgecote, Corsham Court, Lamport Court, Buscot Place and Anglesey Court in Great Holm.
Kingston Avenue, Willey Court, Mursley Court, and Roveley Court in Stony Stratford.
Greenfield Road, Eddington Court, Websters Meadow, and Culmstock Close in Emerson Valley.
Hyde Close, Cypress, and Greenwich Gardens in Newport Pagnell.
Barleycroft, Perracombe, and Elmhurst Close in Furzton.
Oakley Gardens and Warmington Gardens in Downhead Park.
Broadpiece and Sterling Close in Pennyland.
Nicholas Mead, and France Furlong in Great Linford.
Wimbledon Place and Stokenchurch Place in Bradwell Common.
Barbers Mews in Neath Hill.
Ludgate in Leadenhall.
Hipwell Court in Olney.
Eridge Green in Kents Hill.
Timothys Close, Wolverton.