Household waste collections in St Andrews are to be reviewed following the success of a policy to rid the town’s streets of unsightly commercial bins.
The number of bins left on the streets all day has dropped significantly in the six months since the introduction of the scheme, which only allows waste to be put out for collection between 7.30am and 10.30am.
Any bagged waste must be enclosed in pest-proof liners.
Outwith the three-hour collection window, bins must be stored off the street.
The result is a marked reduction in the amount of litter spilling out of bin bags and in the number of commercial bins left on pavements or blocking parking spaces.
Martin Kingham, manager with Fife’s roads network management service, said all business owners, waste contractors and community groups spoken to about the scheme last month said it had had a positive impact on St Andrews town centre.
“The improvements attributed to this policy have highlighted a need to examine the potential to carry out a similar exercise for the presentation of household waste, particularly in relation to bagged waste,” he said.
“Feedback from this project will be used to help guide engagement and communication with residents as part of a review of the domestic waste and recycling container provision in St Andrews town centre.”
Businesses have begun sharing bins and recycling more in a bid to comply with the policy and many have reported the move has also saved them money.
Lisa Cathro, owner of Zest in South Street said she and the two premises owned by neighbouring cafe Combini now shared two bins rather than putting out six.
“It took a while to get used to it but now it’s working great,” she said.
“We’re reducing food waste by being creative with leftovers and we’ve reduced packaging as well, with 98% of our waste now being recycled.
“We’ve saved a lot of money by working together.”
St Andrews Conservative councillor Dominic Nolan said he had been amazed by the effects of the policy.
“Not only have we managed to make our streets cleaner and released much-needed parking space, we have improved recycling and sustainability as businesses have sought to co-operate in implementing the policy,” he said.
“I now hope that further work can be done to improve the situation regarding domestic bins in the town centre and am especially grateful for the discussions which have taken place between the council, university and students’ association regarding student waste at the end of the academic semester.”