Call to speed up Westminster bulky refuse collection service as dumping epidemic continues

Labour Councillors have called on Westminster City Council to speed up the paid-for bulky refuse collection service after residents have been told they will have to wait up to 2 weeks for a collection.

Labour say that the Council’s failure to provide a speedy bulky refuse collection service is leading to more unwanted furniture and household goods being dumped on the streets.

One resident wrote:

“I am trying to dispose of large items legally and responsibly using the Council, it is most unhelpful.  Not only do Veolia (contacted via the Westminster council site) charge over £20 but they then refuse to pick up for over a fortnight, even though they take full payment at time of booking. No wonder people leave their unwanted furniture etc. all over the streets.”

Another resident tweeted:

“Recently booked bulky pickup thru Westminster site. Two minute process Easy. Got multiple texts as reminder of pickup too. Only downside was 1-2 week wait for collection.”

Councillor Paul Dimoldenberg, Labour’s Environment and City Management spokesperson, said:

“Expecting people to store unwanted beds and fridges for two weeks before they are collected by the Council is totally unreasonable and impractical for the vast majority of people. Most people living in flats do not have the space to store bulky goods. And these days, people expect a much swifter service than the Council is providing.”

If the Council insists on calling its residents ‘customers’, then it should provide a level of service that 21st century customers expect. Waiting 2 weeks for a collection is very poor service and it needs to improve. Otherwise the current outbreak of dumping will only get worse.”

“We have called for an urgent meeting with the Cabinet Members responsible for this service to discuss how it can be improved quickly.”

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Posted in Refuse collection, Rubbish collection, Rubbish dumping, Westminster City Council | Tagged , | Leave a comment

First Labour Advice Surgery in Mayfair this Saturday 19th May

West End Labour Councillor Pancho Lewis is holding his first advice surgery this Saturday 19th May at Danceworks in Mayfair, from 10:30am to noon at 16 Balderton Street, W1K 6TN.

No appointment is needed.

Posted in Labour Councillors, Mayfair, Pancho Lewis, West End | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Action to clean filthy phone boxes in Great Windmill Street

We have reported a number of filthy BT phone boxes in Great Windmill Street in Soho and have asked them to be cleaned urgently.

The number to call to report dirty, damaged or defaced phone kiosks to BT is 0800 661 610 (option 1). Here is the recommended information to provide:

  • clear location details (street location; ideally the phone number of the kiosk but this is not essential)
  • clear descriptions of the problems in the kiosk (broken windows, graffiti, waste or hazards, defective equipment, or excessive carding)

You can send an email to BT with this information to customer.serv.payphones@bt.com

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Labour call for action on worst dumping ‘hot spot’ in Westminster

Labour Councillors and Karen Buck MP are demanding urgent action to catch the people responsible for the constant dumping of furniture, household goods and builders’ materials at the corner of Ashmore Road and Shirland Road in Queen’s Park Ward.

Labour say that this is the worst dumping ‘hot spot’ in Westminster and the Council has refused to take action despite regular calls for action by Councillors and residents.

Councillors have called on the Council to locate CCTV cameras at the junction so that those responsible can be filmed and the photographs used in evidence in prosecutions.

Posted in CCTV cameras, Karen Buck MP, Labour Councillors, Queen's Park, Rubbish collection, Rubbish dumping, Westminster City Council | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Labour get quick action on Vauxhall Bridge Road pedestrian and cycle hazard

Thanks to the Labour Action Teams in Vincent Square and Tachbrook Wards, a serious hazard to pedestrian cyclists, caused by scaffolding erected on the pavement, has been removed.

On Thursday 10th May, residents wrote to the Labour Team with pictures of recently-erected scaffolding around the White Swan pub on Vauxhall Bridge Road. Residents said:

“This is very dangerous. No footpath at all now by the White Swan crossing as pub is scaffolded! Cycles and pedestrians even more likely to crash”

The Labour Team immediately alerted the Council, who in turn got on to Transport for London, who are responsible for Vauxhall Bridge Road. TfL emailed the scaffolding company:

“Please see attached photo of the scaffold outside The White Swan on Vauxhall Bridge Road. Pedestrians are being forced into the cycle lane as you have shut the footway with barriers. The scaffold should be 450mm back from the kerb line and I notice a piece of scaffolding extending out over the cycle way.

Please arrange for these issues to be corrected immediately or your scaffold licence may be revoked requiring you to remove the scaffold on the Vauxhall Bridge Road elevation.”

The scaffolding company complied with the instruction and said:

“I have forwarded this email on to the manager in charge where he will deal with this immediately.”

Posted in Cycling, Cyclists, Pavements and Roads, Tachbrook Ward, Transport for London, Vauxhall Bridge Road, Vincent Square, Westminster City Council | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Maida Vale Labour Team ‘hit the ground running’ with first success

The Maida Vale Labour Team – Geoff Barraclough, Rita Begum and Nafsika Butler-Thalassis – have ‘hit the ground running’ with a quick success in getting the Council to clear rubbish around bins at the entrance to Paddington Rec, along Carlton Vale.

During the election campaign, residents wrote to the Maida Vale Labour Team:

“Please would you look at the recycling bins by the gates to Paddington Recreation Ground, Carlton Vale entrance. Some years ago, these were changed from smaller more mobile bins, to large heavy bins which cannot be moved easily.

There is an accumulation of rubbish behind them that I think is very difficult to reach and clean. This evening I saw my first rat of the year running from the Carlton Tavern site to behind the bins. I imagine the rubble of the Carlton Tavern has given great shelter to rats. I know the blocks on both sides of the gates have had increased problems with rats over the last two years.”

This week, the Council said:

“I understand the concerns and difficulties in clearing items deposited behind these units by the regular recycling crew, however we have a dedicated container maintenance team, who carry out a thorough clear up as shown in the attached photos. This site has been deep cleaned last week and I will keep them on a regular monitoring sheet to avoid similar incidents in the future.”

A delighted resident told us:

“Perhaps these bins were not on the cleaning list before, but I am very glad to see they will be from now on. I have never seen the area that clean and do appreciate you getting action on this. They really gave it a good clean, thank you.”

Posted in Carlton Vale, Council staff, Maida Vale, Paddington Rec | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

First success for Bayswater Labour’s Maggie Carman

Bayswater Labour Councillor Maggie Carman has chalked up her first success by ensuring that over 60’s get a concessionary rate at Porchester Turkish Baths.

During the recent election campaign, Maggie took up the following issue with the Council:

“Before Everyone Active won the contract to run Westminster’s Leisure Centres, OAPs living outside of the borough could receive a reduced rate to enter the Turkish Baths. However, once EA took over, this discount was removed and applied solely to Westminster residents. Subsequently, I came across a few customers who lived outside of Westminster and had been using the Baths for over 30 years; they said that they couldn’t afford to pay the full price so would have to stop going.

After lobbying EA and WCC, this decision was finally reversed and a notice was placed at the Turkish Baths reception stating the revised concessions. The notice wasn’t up for very long, but I did manage to take a picture of it before it before it was taken down.

I told a long-standing employee at Whiteley’s she was entitled to the recently reinstated reduced rate. A few weeks ago, I asked if she was given the reduced rate and she was told she had to be over 65 to be entitled to it.  I am quite appalled that she has been treated in this way.”

Now Westminster Council has confirmed that over 60s will get the concessionary rate and say:

The team have investigated the issue and confirmed with Everyone Active that customers over 60 years old (resident and non-resident) are entitled to the concessionary discount. They have asked that a sign be placed back on the reception desk to avoid any confusion.

A new ‘Active Westminster’ application form is also being produced which will be distributed across the sites and should help to further avoid future confusion regarding eligibility for concessions.”

Posted in Bayswater, Labour Councillors, Porchester Turkish Baths, Westminster City Council | Tagged , | Leave a comment