B31 Voices has received reports that refuse collectors have been verbally and physically abused while carrying out their rounds in the area. We have heard anecdotal accounts of verbal abuse and a glass bottle being thrown at a crew member. Today, we received a report that a refuse collector: “had someone drive into him because they wouldn’t move the bin wagon.”

Acting Strategic Director Place for Birmingham City Council, Jacqui Kennedy, confirmed the bottle throwing incident and verbal abuse.

She said: “I can confirm that our crews were verbally abused on New Years Day in Kings Norton and in one incident a resident threw a bottle from his recycling bin at our crew who were withdrawing to reduce conflict. This has been reported to the police.  I am not aware of a motorist driving at our crew however I can confirm that we do face a lot of abuse from motorists when we delay their journey whilst making our collections which is why we try to start as early as possible and plan our routes to avoid schools between 8.30am and 9am and other high traffic areas during rush hour etc.

“All incidents of abuse reported to us will be reported to the police, BCC has a zero tolerance to abuse (verbal or physical) or violence towards our staff.” she added.

In response to reports of abuse, councillor for Northfield, Brett O’Reilly tweeted:

IMG_0217Refuse has been dumped at one recycling point in West Heath, creating a “rubbish mountain’ which the council have had to clear several times, only for it to reappear.

Jacqui Kennedy said: “I am really disappointed that the minority of people feel fit to dump on our streets, when there is a free facility within two miles of West Heath.  We have cleared this location twice in a week and this is at great expense to the council.  It is totally unnecessary to flytip/dump on our streets as the Household Recycling Centre has been open every day except Christmas Day and Boxing Day!  Also I am worried and surprised at the apparent lack of pride in our local neighbourhoods.”

She confirmed that the council have identified several leads to identify potential fly tippers at the site and that each will be issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice of £80.

Discussion of refuse collection issues has been particularly heated on our Facebook page since the introduction of wheelie bins in November. With excessive amounts of rubbish for crews to clear following the festive period, there have been numerous reports of late and missed collections.

While many readers have expressed their gratitude to frontline workers for a good service received, others have complained about missed collections and alleged mess left behind.

If you do have any issues with refuse collection, please follow the advice below: 

  • Report a missed collection online:  http://www.birmingham.gov.uk/missedcollections
  • If you still have no collection, repeated missed collections or other issues, contact your local councillors for support. You can find you councillors’ contact details by entering your postcode here: https://localview.birmingham.gov.uk/My_Local_Information/Sites/MyLocalInformation/
  • Excess rubbish: Residents are reminded that extra Christmas rubbish will be collected by refuse trucks if left out with wheelie bins until January 8th. Household rubbish should be secured in black bags. Cardboard can be flattened and bundled together with string. Alternatively, extra rubbish can be taken to Lifford Lane recycling centre in Kings Norton.


  1. I’ve come home to find my wheelie bin either in the road or blocking the very narrow path. I watched how lacksidasical they are on there rounds.

    While no one should be abused at work, they could help themselves by not leaving wheelie bins strewn across the road and pavements. If my bin is damaged I will not be purchasing a new one out of my own pocket.

    Violence and using your car as a weapon is deffinatly not acceptable. As for them blocking the road; walk your kids to school you lazy buggers!

  2. I really don’t know why some people have to be so aggressive. At the end of the day, the refuse teams are trying to do a job and if you have to wait for a few minutes to get past the truck, then so be it. And, as for people fly-tipping, this is totally unacceptable. It just makes areas look dreadful and if they are happy for their local area to look that way, can you just imagine what their own homes are like.

  3. Thanks to BCC the rubbish left by lazy people has been cleared twice,and as for abusing people trying to carry out their job I find this disgraceful behaviour. I thought west heathians were better behaved than that.so sorry for the crew involved

  4. Nobody should deserve to have glass bottles thrown at them.
    I know that binmen can be awkward at times.
    But there just trying to provide a service.
    But this is just modern day society today.
    Nurses.firefighters.social workers,ambulance crews and even bus drivers all get attacked whilst doing there day jobs.
    What is wrong with people today.
    Is it somethink in our foods.
    The world has not gone insane.
    Its the folk that live in it….

    • The reason bin men and bus drivers get abused (especially Travel West Midlands bus drivers) is because they are the biggest bunch of ignorant wankers I’ve ever met and I’ve had to put up with them since 2011, but I’m going to order a brand new BMW Series 320d 2.0TD ED Plus next week and then in 6-8 weeks I won’t kave to get on a bus again heaven and best of all, all I have to pay for is Diesel as the DWP pay mobility everything else out of my personal independence payment. I seriously cannot want had enough of Ignorant arsehole for bus drivers.

  5. Why don’t they do their collections at night like they do in Spain, and other European countries? Roads are quieter and would avoid this problem completely. And to be honest, their drivers need to learn to pull in to the kerb instead of sitting in the middle of the road…. THAT’s why motorists get pissed off.

    • Exactly, spot on. That’s what pisses people off & then they are so rude and ignorant & technically what they are doing is dangerous as someone could need to get past in a emergency & it is illegal, as it clearly states in the Highway Code that you are not suppose to block the queens highway & as for night time collections,. Come on, ‘please’ this is Birmingham City Council here & The United Kingdom “tick feckers” hehe we are the ones that gave the technology of high speed trains to Germany because we would never be able to get it to work on our crap shite rail network & when they showed us how to do it, they sold it back to us for tons more than they paid for it hehe lol what a joke lmao.

  6. Get rid of agency workers, and bring in the full time, on the books workers, and pay them a decent wage, if you pay them enough they are more likely to pay more care and attention to their work and not leave a mess? Agency workers, who don’t give a damn about their jobs just as long as they get paid at the end of the week by the uncouth bureaucrats who charge the bcc mega-bucks for a below standard workforce, should be held accountable for all the extra cleaning required, do this, and you will see a noticeable increase in the standard of work




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