Garden waste collections - your questions answered

When can I sign up and pay?

The 2021/22 garden waste service starts on 1 June 2021 and you can sign up and pay for the service on the Council website with effect from 29 April 2021 onwards. Please sign up online.

Create or sign in to your account to subscribe to garden waste

The charge is an annual charge and covers the 12 months period from 1 June until 31 May.

What if I have paid for my garden waste collections and a new brown bin but my bin won't arrive in time for the next collection?

If you have paid for both your subscription and for your new brown bin but your bin will not be delivered in time for the next collection, you will receive an alternative bin to use until your new bin is delivered.  We apologise for any inconvenience and hope to resolve this matter shortly.

Will there be any interruption to my service?

If you sign up before 31 May 2021 there will be no initial interruption to your service. Please be reminded that no collections will be undertaken during the Christmas and New Year period.

How much does the service cost?

£30 each year for one bin to be emptied. There are no concessions and no reductions for residents who maintain grass verges or other areas outside their property and clean up leaves or other vegetation that fall into their garden from nearby trees. The charge is the same for everyone. To reduce the cost you may wish to consider sharing a bin with a neighbour.

Why should I subscribe online?

We are able to offer online subscriptions to our garden waste collection service payable by direct debit, debit or credit card. The majority of our garden waste subscribers subscribe online as it is the quickest and easiest way to continue your subscription.

How do I set up a self-service account?

If you don't already have a self-service account, please click here to register.

Once you have created an account, activate your account by clicking on the link in your email.

Once your self-service account has been activated, visit out Garden Waste Collections page.

I subscribed online last year, however I cannot remember my self-serve account details, what do I do?

If you still have the same email address you used to register a self-service account but have forgotten your password, please click here for the login page and press the forgotten password button. Then type your email address in the box, press the request password reset and follow any further instructions.

If you have forgotten your password and your email address, or you have a new email address, then you will need to create a new account. But don't worry, it is simple to do and only takes a few minutes. Just follow the instructions under 'How do I set up a self-service account'.

If you have moved house and are still using the same email address then you don't need to set up a new self-service account however you will need to change your address on the account to your new address.

If your new home doesn't have a brown bin then you can buy one here for £25.  

Can I pay by direct debit?

Yes, we are pleased to announce that we have now introduced direct debit as a new payment option for subscribers. This can be processed online. The direct debit option is a convenient way to ensure your subscription automatically renews each year unless you choose to cancel.

When will my collection take place?

There are no changes to current advertised collection days and the Council will continue to empty your bins every two weeks (except for the two week Christmas and New Year period when collections are suspended.)

To check your collection day, put your address or postcode into the "Your West Lancashire" panel on this page.

Can I cancel my subscription?

In line with the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013, there is a 14 day cancellation period, which starts from the day you sign up for the service, during which you are able to change your mind and get a refund. Your first collection will be on your normal recycling day after the 14 day cancellation period. If you put your bin(s) out before the first collection date, it may not get collected.

If you cancel a Direct Debit because you no longer wish to receive the service in the subsequent year, please contact your bank to cancel the payment for the following year. In the event of any failed payment, the Service will be withdrawn. No refunds will be given for part years or unexpired annual subscription periods.

I signed up by direct debit, when will my payment come out?

This year, payment will come out of your account in 16 days from the date that you signed up, then any reoccurring payments would be on 1st April (or closest working date) each year until cancellation. Payment for any additional bins added to your subscription after the first 14 days will come out your account within the next 5 days.

What colour bin is required for garden waste?

For your garden waste collection you will require a brown bin.

When will I get my brown bin?

If you have requested a brown bin, once you have successfully submitted your new subscription request, you will be given an expected delivery date for your brown bin. If you are an existing subscriber, you will already have a brown bin.

Can I have more than one brown bin?

You can have additional brown bins emptied at a cost of £25 each per year.

If you don’t already have the brown bins that you need, you will have to buy them from the Council at a cost of £25 each.

If I buy additional bins, when will they be delivered?

Once you have successfully submitted your request, you will be given an expected delivery date for your brown bin.

How do I sign up and pay for the service?

You can sign up and pay by direct debit, debit or credit card only on the Council's website. If you are having difficulty paying the garden waste charge by direct debit, credit or debit card or signing up online you may wish to ask a family member to assist you.

Do I need to sign up now, or can I sign up later in the year?

For the 2021/22 collection year you can sign up online from 29 April 2021, you can still sign up part way through the year, the cost is the same.

What if I decide not to sign up and pay?

If you have a brown bin please retain it at your property for future use.

Can I share a bin with my neighbour?

Yes, but one household will need to sign up, pay and take responsibility for the subscription. The bin must also be presented on collection day at the property where the bin has been signed up from.

Can I get a refund?

When you sign up you will have a 14 day 'cooling off' period when you can change your mind and receive a refund. You will need to do this online through the Council's website. After this period, no refunds will be given.

What happens if I move house?

The bin must be left at the property you are moving from. Payment for the garden waste service relates to the property and is not transferable to another address within the Borough. If you move to another property within West Lancashire where no payment has been made, you will have to sign up and pay at your new address if you want to receive the service. If you move to a property where payment has already been made, you will receive the collection service for the remainder of that subscription period. If you have subscribed by direct debit, this payment should be cancelled through the bank to avoid future payments being taken against your previous address.

Is there any other way to dispose of the garden waste service?

You can take your garden waste to the household waste recycling centres at Glenburn Road, Skelmersdale and Abbey Lane, Burscough. N.B. The HWRC's are operated by Lancashire County Council, not West Lancashire Borough Council. You could also compost garden waste at home. You could also consider sharing a bin with your neighbour which will reduce the cost for both of you. Please check Lancashire County Councils website (external link) for opening times.

Can I put garden waste in my grey bin?

We encourage all residents to either use the garden waste collection service, home compost their garden waste or use the household waste recycling centres to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill. If you choose to put garden waste in your grey bin, you may find that you don’t have enough room in your grey bin to dispose of household waste. If you present your bin and it is too heavy or the lid won't close we will not empty your bin. No additional side waste will be taken.

Where can I get a compost bin from?

There is a composting bin scheme available across Lancashire. Visit the Lancashire composting website https://getcomposting.com/profile/login.

Can I put garden waste in other containers for you to collect?

You can only use brown wheelie bins supplied by the Council. We will not empty any other type of containers.

How will the collectors know who has paid for the garden waste?

A subscription at a property can be cross referenced with the computer software system on board the collection vehicle. If a household hasn't subscribed and present their bin for collection an advisory label will be placed on the bin. Please ensure your house number is clearly marked on your bin.

What happens if my bin isn’t emptied?

It may be because it contains the wrong item or it is too heavy. If this happens we will put a label on the bin to let you know. If you have met all the collection conditions and we fail to collect, please report a missed collection online.

Do I get a refund if the Council fail to empty my bin?

No refunds will be given.

If I have a gardener – what should I do?

A gardener should take the garden waste away and dispose of it as commercial waste as part of the service they provide to you.

Will I get a sticker for my brown bin?

You do not need a sticker to notify the crews of a valid subscription. The crews will cross reference the property with the computer system on board the collection vehicle to see if it has signed up to the service. Where a property hasn't signed up and the bin is presented for collection an advisory label will be placed on the bin.

Will I still receive a subscription pack if stickers aren't being used?

You will receive an information pack via email explaining the service, the terms and conditions of service and some helpful Frequently Asked Questions.