Lost or stolen bins - frequently asked questions

Replacement bin charges Frequently asked questions

Why has Southampton City Council introduced a charge for replacement general waste (green lidded) bins?

The charge has been introduced to cover the administration and delivery of replacement general waste (green lidded) bins and is intended to encourage residents to take responsibility for the wheeled bins provided and to reduce demand for replacement containers.

Due to a significant reduction in central government funding the council can no longer afford to replace bins entirely at its own cost. The charge will help to offset administrative and delivery costs associated with providing a replacement bin.

What is the charge covering?

The charge is for the delivery and administration costs of the bin and includes VAT.

Does the charge apply to all replacement general waste (green lidded) bin requests whether the bin has been lost, stolen or damaged?

No, only lost or stolen replacement general waste (green lidded) bins will be charged for.

How can I pay for a replacement bin?

Payment by card can be carried out online or over the telephone by calling 023 8083 3005.

What happens if I don't pay for a replacement bin, will bags of general waste be collected?

Bags of waste will not be collected as all general waste should be presented in a general waste (green lidded) bin. However, if you do not wish to pay the administration and delivery charge for a replacement bin, you can dispose of your waste at one of the household waste recycling centres.

Can I avoid the 'admin' charge by collecting my new bin from the depot?

Wheeled bins are available by delivery only. Residents are not permitted to collect wheeled bins for operational and health and safety issues.

My general waste (green lidded) bin keeps being stolen, what can I do?

There are several things you can do to help prevent this occurring:

  • Clearly label your bin to identify it as belonging to your property
  • Do not place your bin out for collection the night before if possible, as this means more time for it to go missing. Bins should be placed outside for collection before 6:30am
  • Try and ensure that your bin is brought back in as soon as possible after the collection. Your neighbours may be able to help with this
  • Check that your neighbour has not inadvertently taken your bin or that it has been misplaced

I cannot take delivery of the bin, how can I be sure it has been delivered?

The bin will be left at the front of your property, away from the road, if possible.

Will the crews return the bin after collection because that is when the bins go missing?

All collection crews must return bins after emptying to the place the bin was collected from. Please ensure that you clearly number your bin and back gate if you receive a collection from the rear of your property to avoid this going missing and to help you and the crews to identify which address the bin ‘belongs’ to.

What am I supposed to do with my waste whilst I wait for the delivery of a bin?

Your replacement general waste (green lidded) bin will be delivered within two to four weeks. In the meantime, we ask that you store your waste and once you receive your replacement place the waste in the bin ready to be collected. We will not take bags on collection day so do not leave them out. Alternatively, you can dispose of your waste at one of our household waste recycling centres.

I have paid the charge for a replacement bin however my old one has now turned up, can I have a refund?

This is a non-refundable charge, as the charge covers administration and delivery of the bin rather than the actual bin. Therefore, we would advise that before paying for a replacement, ensure you have had a good look around to see if you can find your bin as no refunds will be given and the requested bin will not be left.

Do I have to pay for replacement recycling bins?

No. The Council wants to encourage residents to recycle and this is why we will not charge for the administration and delivery of replacement recycling bins.

Why should I have to pay when someone has stolen my bin?

The bin is provided for your use by the council and it is your responsibility to ensure that it is safe. To prevent theft make sure that your bin is taken in as soon as possible after collection and we suggest that you label your bin with your house number/name.

Does the law require you to provide bins free of charge?

The law allows the council to specify the type and size of container that residents must present their waste in, and can specify the type of waste to go in the container. The council is also allowed to make a charge to the resident for the provision of the waste receptacle.

In accordance with the Environmental Protection Acts, Southampton City Council are obliged to provide all households with suitable receptacles for the disposal of household waste, green lidded bins for residual waste and blue lidded bins for dry recyclables.

These bins are used by householders but remain the property of the Council. Effectively we issue the bins on a long-term loan basis.

Due to the number of bins being lost and the subsequent cost of replacing them, we have adopted a system of charging for replacement bins in line with many other Councils.

Will I be charged if my bin has fallen into the back of the lorry?

If your bin is damaged or lost as a result of falling into the back of a waste collection vehicle this will be replaced free of charge. The waste collection teams record the details of any such incidents. If the Customer Contact Centre staff are unable to verify your request for a new bin a charge will be applied for a replacement bin.

If I pay for a replacement bin, does it then become my property?

No. The original bin belonged to the Council. Should you lose property belonging to the Council you need to replace it. Therefore, any bin replacement bin would again remain the property of the Council.

What does it cost?

The cost of replacing a lost or stolen general waste (green lidded) bin is:

  • £30.00 – 140 litre general waste bin
  • £40.00 – 240 litre general waste bin
  • £50.00 – 360 litre general waste bin

This will cover the cost of administration and delivery.

What if I get rid of my own refuse and withhold part of my Council Tax?

You may dispose of your household waste yourself at one of the local waste disposal sites. This does not however absolve you from your legal obligation to pay the full amount of Council Tax for your property band.

How can I stop it being stolen again?

  • Label the bin clearly with your address or at least the house number
  • Do not place the bin out too early. (Bins should be placed out for 6:30am rather than the night before or any other time)
  • Bins should be collected as soon as possible after emptying
  • Check that your neighbour has not inadvertently taken your bin or that it has been misplaced

What if I want to order a smaller bin?

As part of the council's commitment to waste minimisation, there will be no charge if you are downsizing through exchange from a larger to a smaller bin.

Can I appeal against the charge?

No, the charge is a standard charge for green lidded replacement bins.

I have moved house and there is no general waste (green lidded) bin at my address, do I have to pay for a bin?

Yes you will still have to pay the administration and delivery charge. You can do this by calling 023 8083 3005. If the property is a new build the developer should have purchased a full set of bins for the property.

Can I buy my general waste (green lidded) bin from somewhere cheaper?

No. The bins are of a certain specification in terms of size, colour and quality and are compatible with the Council's vehicles. The cost of purchasing a wheeled bin is considerably more than the administration charge.