CHANGES to Worcester’s garden waste service are on the way – with automatic collections scrapped for certain parts of the year.

City council chiefs want to save cash on fuel by asking people to ring the Worcestershire Hub if they want their garden waste bins emptied during November and the first fortnight in March.

At the moment people who get the service receive a fortnightly collection on Mondays – but as part of the changes some households could also be moved to other days of the week. Bosses say the alterations will stop collectors wasting journeys, save money and safeguard the future of the scheme.

But it has not gone down well with everyone – with some people saying they don’t want to have to make a phone call for a pick-up.

At the moment 4,300 people in Worcester pay £37 for the service, and can fill the bin with grass cuttings, hedge clippings, leaves, twigs, plants, weeds and flowers.

Tolladine Road resident Jean Preece, aged 73, said: “It’s sensible to not have collections when it is cold, as people don’t go out to their gardens as much, I’ve no problem there.

“But to have to ring up when you do want it collected, even for just that period, is nonsense. I’ve tried to get through to the hub before and all I get is a voicemail saying ‘we’ll ring you back’ and they don’t.”

The council say fortnightly collections from the second half of March through to the end of October will remain automatic.

There are no garden waste pick-ups between December and February, and this will remain the same following the changes, which start in March.

The council also says anyone who is moved from Monday pick-ups to other days of the week will be told about it in writing first.

Councillor Roger Knight, the cabinet member for cleaner and greener, said: “We are anxious to deliver the service and not put up the price, and it makes sense to do collections when it is needed.

“It’s an affordable way to do it and although nothing is set in stone, there are no plans to ask customers to ring up at other times of the year.

“At the moment we only collect garden waste on Mondays and there is only so much you can do one day of the week, so by collecting on other days we can offer the service to more people.”