Thanet council agrees £2.2million spend on 11 new waste freighters

Waste operatives

Thanet council will spend £2.2million on 11 new refuse freighters.

Speaking at an online council meeting last week Cllr Steve Albon, responsible for operational services, said the spend was necessary for the council to be able to meet its waste collection obligations.

The 26-tonne, open back vehicles, costing £195,929 plus VAT each, will be able to carry a load of 10 tonnes, higher than the six tonnes capacity of the current freighters.

Cllr Albon said: “The economic lifespan (of the current vehicles) is seven years. This is because of the heavy nature of the work and type of load the vehicles carry.The vehicles to be replaced were purchased in 2013. These can no longer be economically maintained, quite simply it would leave the council unable to deliver a full household service of they are not replaced.”

The greater load capacity would mean less return trips to the tip. The vehicles are all interchangeable.

The freighters that are being replaced all required extensive refurbishment works 18 months ago and will require more work before the new vehicles are delivered.

Cllr Albon said: “There is a long lead in period of 40 weeks. Refuse vehicles are built to order, you can’t just get them off the shelf.”

This means if ordered now the freighter would arrive in batches of two or three between February and April next year.

A spend of up to £2.9million was agreed in February as part of the council budget.

The new vehicles will be supplied by Dennis Eagle Ltd


  1. When will the council purchase a new or additional mechanical road sweeping machine. ? 4 years I have been waiting for either man or beast to sweep our road without success. My road is full of tree’s on one side of the road (inside private grounds). In heavy down pours the junction gets flooded and a property gets flooded. Do TDC or the Town Council care…………..NO

        • My father was on the bins for many years, when dustmen were proper men. When they carried metal bins from the door, emptied it, then returned it, any rubbish spills, were cleared as best possible. They didn’t have bins on wheels, they didn’t have a lift on the back of a dust cart. Whatever was in the bin, it was taken, whatever was placed next to the bin, it was taken; bags, furniture, old bicycles, beds.

          Whatever the weather, snow, rain, the service never stopped, and was more reliable.

      • My father was on the bins for many years, when dustmen were proper men. When they carried metal bins from the door, emptied it, then returned it, any rubbish spills, were cleared as best possible. They didn’t have bins on wheels, they didn’t have a lift on the back of a dust cart. Whatever was in the bin, it was taken, whatever was placed next to the bin, it was taken; bags, furniture, old bicycles, beds.

        Whatever the weather, snow, rain, the service never stopped, and was more reliable.

  2. Will the workers be able to actually get the rubbish in the back of these? Rather than what they normally do now, which is tip it all over the road rather than into the back of the truck. The bin men always leave a trail of waste behind them, why are they not instructed to pick up what they spill rather than leave it on the road. It always surprises me that the people who are paid to collect the rubbish seem to tip most of it onto the road when collecting it and then drive off as if nothing has happened.

  3. Our bin men, who’ve served us diligently and cheerfully through this CV pandemic, usually do a brilliant job.
    Thanks, guys.

  4. What sad comments, in 1960 I was one of Ramsgate Corporation bin collectors, that helped to build, Sandwich Road, our Dustcarts was and old Dennis,life was hard, and every bin, had to be emptied by hand,plus all the dust from coal, as all the pits were being worked by kent miners,hard work for £10-10shilling a week, we cleared every thing, Armchairs, beds ect you name it we took it, that that was our job,hard way of life, not like today with modern bin lifts,you would never get the staff, our legacy, we left behind,is now a wild life sanctuary, opened by David Attenborough.

  5. Our bin men seem to drop half the rubbish onto the street and in respect of road sweeping…..what road sweeping? A disgusting service…..TDC or acronym “They Don’t Care!!”

  6. My bin men, who’ve served me well through this CV pandemic, do a good job.
    The only problem i have had is they always leave my bins on the pavement that sometimes blow over and is a hazard to cars and disabled people are unable to get past so have to go in the road , I have a front garden so that extra foot if that could be a lifesaver.

  7. Real opportunity missed to put the whole operation out to tender. Introduce strict performance standards that mean the streets actually look cleaner after they have left rather than rubbish strewn across the streets. Would save a lot of money too and mean that the £2m could be used on other capital projects. Dover Council do this very successfully.

    Still, Councillor Albon wouldn’t be able to shake off his Union past and wouldn’t even consider it as Portfolio Holder. What a shame.

      • Sure there are bad examples of privatisation but there are also good examples of where it has saved money and service has improved. The private market in waste collection is mature and well used. It’s unusual for a Council to run its own waste collection service. Let’s face it, the whole waste and recycling service is so shambolic every option should be seriously considered as it can’t get any worse.

        Having said that, the GMB seem to run TDC by all accounts and an ex-Union head is now Portfolio Holder so that may explain the reluctance to explore that option.

  8. Out to tender was no better than in house , they have been there and come back. To those complainers, how about you picking up the waste and keeping the outside of your street clean. Would you do the job they do? I very much doubt it. They do a good job overall. Try being a bit kinder to those that take tonnes of your waste every week. Or do it yourself at the council tip.

    • Joe, your standard response of “well you do it then” really isn’t the most powerful counter-argument I have ever seen.

      The Thanet taxpayer expects a decent level of service for the money they pay each year. If they feel that service is sub standard they have every right to complain or make their feelings known.

      In Thanet the fact remains we have a really shocking approach to waste and recycling. Missed bins, filthy streets, dog faeces everywhere etc. I, and others, have every right to expect better.

      Fortunately I have a long memory and am now retired. I don’t EVER remember Thanet being so dirty. There is rubbish everywhere. The service is failing whether you want to admit it or not. Unfortunately you have a Chief Executive who doesn’t seem willing to take the relevant Director to task for it for reasons that escape me and a Portfolio Holder who doesn’t seem able to hold the Senior Management to account as he used to work for them.

      We deserve better. Much better.

      • In many cases the poor service received from bin men is due to poor supervision! When I pay for a service I expect to receive a good service, as I am paying to have my refuse removed, I should get a good service! The streets of Thanet are covered in litter, and Fly Tipping, why? Someone last week dumped a carrier bag of domestic waste in a short Foot Path, just off Boundary Road, why? Today the bag has blown away, and the contents are now strewn down the ally, as a tripping hazard, this is anti-social behaviour!!

  9. Re litter and dogshit , blame the people who drop litter and those who don’t clean up after their dogs.

    • Marva, I have made the comment on here before. People are lazy all over the country. It is not just a Thanet phenomenon. Other areas seem to cope just fine with street cleaning and dealing with dog poo. TDC just can’t cope with it at all.

      Yes, people shouldn’t do it but you always need a system in place to deal with the issues when they arise. All other Councils seem to be able to do it, why can’t TDC?

  10. TDC put out an announcement that they are going to buy some more refuse lorries and there are 22 ‘comments’ as a result.
    Dog fouling is caused by selfish residents not TDC. Much of the rubbish strewn on the road after a collection is caused by residents using flimsy plastic bags that seagulls pick apart.
    If your wheelie bin is not full to overflowing all of it will end of in the vehicle and will be crushed.
    TDC are not the only Council with this problem, but the nature of Thanet with its intensive development infrastructure and 18th century street scape makes the difficulties worse.
    The Myopic Thanetian suggests privatisation, well TDC went down that path and it was as bad if not worse. Canterbury have booted out Serco and there are many other cases.
    Privatisation is no answer to underfunding. It is not a panacea. Ask the residents of Barnet about Kingdom services if you want an example.
    It can be a solution, but not necessarily.
    Next the doleful ‘R’. Write nicely to TDC, show them proof (photographs) and be persistent, but calm. If you are in Broadstairs, Birchington, Ramsgate or Westgate, write them an email or letter, but nicely and they might respond.
    If you live in Margate don’t bother, as there is no Town Council.
    Finally, perhaps you have forgotten, while you were all safely tucked up out of harms way in the last 3 months, the refuse teams were out picking up your waste. It didn’t stop like so much at KCC and Central Govt, the teams were out there doing their best in dangerous circumstances, so stop moaning and be grateful for a change.

    • George is right. I was wondering what to do on a Thursday night at 8pm. Let’s have a “clap for the bin men” to show our appreciation for, er, doing their job when they were meant to be doing it?

  11. I remember the days when the binmen were trained, now with the cuts, they pick it up as they go along.

    • No, no, no, the bin men are still trained, to make sure they have adequate training on how to open the lid, and also how to wheel the bin.

      It’s the litter pickers, who don’t have training, they just pick it up as they go.

  12. Back in the day, there were far more bin men employed. They had time to pick up any spillages.
    But now we have “efficiency” with everything timed and checked. Fewer bin men mean the ones left have to rush round to meet the requirements. No time to sweep up spills or make sue the right bin goes back to the right house. Got to get on or we’re in trouble.

Comments are closed.