Monday 10 April – Statement on Sutton bin collection service

Sutton Council, as a member of the South London Waste Partnership working with Veolia UK, is introducing a new recycling and rubbish collection service to almost 90,000 homes in the borough. The service started Monday 3 April and for the first time offers food waste and battery and textile recycling to most households, as well as alternate weekly recycling collections and an industry-standard fortnightly rubbish collection.

In anticipation of extra demand for recycling containers we arranged for extra containers to be made available at B&Q Sutton on Saturday 8 April. Unfortunately the demand for these containers was higher than expected. We understand the frustration this must have caused. We thank everyone who waited patiently and apologise for the long queues. We also thank B&Q for their understanding.

Councillor Manuel Abellan, Vice Chair of the Environment and Neighbourhood Committee at Sutton Council said:

“We apologise unreservedly for the issues affecting the introduction of our new rubbish and recycling service. The standard of service has not been up to the quality that residents have rightly come to expect. Residents should have confidence their bin collections are taken on the correct date, and they are given the containers they need to recycle. We’ve organised extra crews and collections with Veolia to get the borough ready for this week’s collections.

“On Saturday Veolia had thousands of green boxes and a plan in place to restock as needed. The huge demand caught them off guard. It is unacceptable that people had to queue for so long. I thank residents for bearing with us while the new arrangements bed in. I encourage residents to visit to access online forms to report missed deliveries, collections and to order extra recycling boxes.”

Scott Edgell, General Manager, Veolia South London said:

“We are continuing to roll out the new rubbish and recycling collection service and are working hard to complete the transition process quickly. We are working with Sutton Council and residents to resolve any issues as smoothly as possible.”

“On Saturday we arranged for residents to pick up free green recycling boxes as part of the service change. The event was very well attended with over 1150 keen recyclers taking part. We distributed 3,450 green recycling boxes to residents providing them with significant additional recycling capacity and everyone left with at least one box.

We thank people for their patience and apologise for the inconvenience the introduction of these new services has caused.”

Recycling – sorting fact from fiction

The council is also seeking to dispel some recycling myths by encouraging borough residents through social media to ask the experts their questions about recycling.

Before launching the campaign, more than 300 Sutton residents were interviewed to assist in understanding borough recycling behaviours.

Sutton Council is working with borough primary schools to run a series of recycling workshops that will be led and delivered by young people.

Sutton residents have been involved in the project, putting forward ideas and visiting the material recycling facility in Crayford, Kent to see first-hand how the recycling process works.

Graham Catt, a Beddington resident who went to the material recycling facility, said:

“We all need to be careful what we put into the green bin. It surprised me just how much unwanted material, such as plastic bags, had to be removed by hand, at great time and expense.”

Myth: All my recycling ends up getting thrown away with the rubbish anyway.
Not true. We know the lorries that collect your recycling and rubbish look the same but your recycling is collected in a separate lorry than the rubbish. Your recycling is taken to a Waste Transfer Site in Beddington before being placed onto large freighter trucks and delivered to a Materials Recycling Facility (MRF). At the MRF recycling is sorted by machines and people by material type (i.e. paper, aluminium) and then bailed. Then it is sent to reprocessors to be recycled into new products.

Myth: There is no point recycling, it doesn’t make a difference.
Recycling stops tonnes of rubbish being buried in landfill. In the UK, recycling saves about 10-15m tonnes of carbon emissions a year – the equivalent of taking 3.5m cars off the road. Recycling costs less than sending waste to landfill so it helps to reduce the costs of waste management in Sutton.

Myth: You can only recycle paper a few times.
Fibres in paper start to break down after they have been recycled five or six times, but the material can still be used to make egg cartons, packaging, loft insulation, paints and even new road surfaces.

Myth: Recycling metal uses more energy than extracting the raw material in the first place.
Recycling aluminium cans saves up to 95 per cent of the energy needed to make new cans from fresh raw material. The energy saved in not having to make just one aluminium can from scratch is enough to power a TV for three hours. Every tonne of new aluminium made creates four tonnes of waste, whereas a tonne of recycled aluminium creates no waste.

Myth: Recycled glass is worse quality than other glass.
Glass can be recycled endlessly without any loss of quality.

Recycling Top Tips

Remember to wash, squash and take the lids off your plastic bottles before you recycle them.
Keep a container for recycling right next to the bin at home, so recycling becomes an easy option.
Buy goods made from recycled materials – this is great for the environment and for encouraging people to recycle more.

Free weekly activities at Beddington Park

Sutton Health Walks – A 60 minute walk in and around Beddington Park. Meet outside St Mary’s Church, 10am Fridays.

Free exercise classes – Bootcamp (9am) and yoga (10am), Saturdays. Must be booked in advance at

Community Golf – Try your hand at Golf at drop-in sessions, 10am -12pm Saturdays. Meet outside the Pavilion Cafe.

0-5K runs – Join running sessions from Get Active Wandle, aimed at beginners, families and those who want to get into or back into running Saturdays. Meet outside the Pavilion Cafe.


Plans to develop new international center for cancer

Last week, your Lib Dem-run Council approved plans to develop a brand-new international center for cancer research, diagnostics and treatment to be built in Sutton. It will be one of the most important centers in the world.

We are working in collaboration with the Institute for Cancer Research, the Royal Marsden and the NHS to bring this world-class center, ‘The London Cancer Hub’ to the borough.

The hub has the potential to:


These exciting plans are gaining interest and momentum not only in Sutton but across London and the rest of the UK. We are determined to deliver this internationally significant project which will bring huge benefits to our borough. You can find out more about the ‘The London Cancer Hub’ here.

John Dodwell former mayor – a tribute

Sadly former councillor and Mayor John Dodwell has passed away after a short illness.

“John was a civil engineer who devoted most of his retirement years to community service in the London Borough of Sutton. He served for 12 years as ward councillor for Wallington North from 1994 to 2006 and was Mayor of Sutton in 2002-03.

“John had a particular interest in education issues, serving on a number of council education bodies and committees, and was Chair of the Education Committee in 1998-99.

“One of the highlights of his busy year as Mayor was his opening of the new Sutton Arena (now David Weir Leisure Centre) in which he emphasised the importance of the centre to the local community. On that occasion he played host to the official guest, world champion hurdler Colin Jackson.

“On his retirement from Sutton Council, John continued to play an active role in community affairs. He was Chair of the Friends of Beddington Park and played a major part in helping to secure £3m from the Heritage Lottery and Big Lottery Funds to restore and upgrade the park.

“John was very committed to the voluntary sector and also championed many projects to make improvements to the local area. An active Catholic, he took a keen interest in housing and homelessness issues.

“John will be sorely missed by his many friends in the voluntary sector to which he gave so much support. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Anne and his family at this sad time.”

Sutton Council’s fast response to the Wallington flash flood

Sutton Council worked with the Environment Agency, Thames Water and the emergency services to clear the centre of Wallington following the flash flood there on the afternoon of Tuesday 7 June.

An intense thunderstorm at 2pm saw almost one month’s rain (3.5cm or 1.4 inches) fall across the borough in an hour. An average of 4.9cm (1.9 inches) of rain normally falls during the whole of June.

Around 2m (6ft 5 inches) of floodwater quickly filled up the low-lying area near the railway bridge at Manor Road in Wallington town centre and the drivers of three cars needed to be rescued.

Sutton Council’s highways contractor was quickly on site and began to pump and lower the amount of floodwater on Manor Road. The Metropolitan Police closed part of the A237 and a Local Authority Liaison Officer co-ordinated with the emergency services to remove the vehicles and clear up after the flooding.

As a Lead Local Flood Authority, Sutton Council is responsible for managing flood risk from surface water, groundwater and ordinary watercourses. The Environment Agency is responsible for flood protection from canals and rivers, and Thames Water is responsible for the drains and sewerage system. Plans are in place to identify any ongoing flood risk.

Sutton residents concerned about flood risk should visit the Environment Agency website for updates, sign up for flood warning updates  or call Agency’s floodline on 0845 988 1188.

Street flooding caused by overflowing drains should be reported to Sutton Council using the Report it feature on the council website or by telephone on 020 8770 5000.