Cash-strapped St Helens Council is to start charging residents for the collection of bulky waste items in a bid to help balance the books.
As government cuts continue to bite into public services, the collection of bulky items such as bathroom suites, sheds, fence panels, sofas, beds and mattresses will be charged for from Monday (December 1).
However, the majority of collections will remain FREE of charge - items such as fridges freezers, washing machines and standard items such as small appliances, vacuum cleaners, ironing boards, old toys and small wooden furniture items.
The new £25 charge is per appointment for up to three items.
The new pricing structure is aimed at helping the council to meet the cost of providing the service - as well as contributing towards the financial savings that need to be made in order to achieve a balanced budget.
Coun Seve Gomez-Aspron said: “These items make up a small percentage of the overall number of bulky waste collections but require a disproportionate amount of resources to collect and dispose of.
“Residents often use this service to remove substantial amounts of material from their property to avoid the inconvenience of taking it to the Household Waste Recycling Centre or to avoid the cost of hiring a skip or vehicle to take the material.
“The majority of bulky collections are still free, however.”
Aside from the bulky waste collection service, residents can also take large items to their nearest household recycling centre - where the majority of waste can be separated for recycling.
Charitiess such as the British Heart Foundation, Willowbrook Hospice and the HoneyRose Foundation also collect some household items.
To request a bulky items collection from the council, call 01744 676789.
The service is by appointment only and can also be booked via the council’s website.