Image Coronavirus

Coronavirus FAQs

Southend Borough Council and Veolia have been working to minimise the impact of coronavirus on recycling and waste services, and street cleansing.

Veolia employees are classed as key workers by the Government to make sure essential services, such as waste and recycling collections can continue.


Business continuity plans have been successfully put in place and resources are being closely watched to make sure the most essential services can continue to be delivered safely. Any updates will be put on our website, so please check regularly in case of any changes.

Kerbside collections

My household is self-isolating – what should we do with our recycling and waste?

If you have symptoms that may be caused by COVID-19, have received a positive test result, or live in the same household as someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, please follow the UK Government’s advice and store your personal waste (e.g. used tissues and disposable cleaning cloths) securely within disposable bags.

When appropriate, these bags should:

  • be tied
  • placed into another bag
  • securely tied or sealed

Please keep this waste separate from other bin bags. This waste must be stored for at least 72 hours before being put in your usual domestic or household waste bin.

Other household waste can be disposed of as normal and put out for collection on your usual day.

You have said collections are taking place as normal, but my recycling/garden waste/ rubbish hasn’t been collected – what should I do?

Please raise a missed collection as normal on MySouthend. Please remember that we may be running slightly later or earlier than normal, so please make sure that your sacks, boxes and bins are presented by 7am to ensure collection. Collections continue until 6pm.

Are there any changes to recycling and rubbish collections?

No. All recycling and rubbish collections are currently taking place as normal. Any changes to the services will be shared on our website, so please check this regularly.

Are there any changes to garden waste collections?

All garden waste collections are currently taking place as normal.
If you have signed up to the garden waste service and your garden waste is not collected, please raise a missed collection on MySouthend.

I live in a flat – are there any changes to my recycling and rubbish collections?

No, all recycling and waste collections are currently running as normal.

If changes need to be made to collections, which ones will be affected?

Should decisions need to be taken about stopping services, the following low priority services will be stopped first:

  • Bulky waste collections
  • Garden waste collections
  • Textiles collections

This will provide resources to make sure essential services like:

  • Recycling collections
  • Rubbish collections
  • Food collections

can stay in operation as a priority.
Service updates will be put on our website, so please check regularly in case of any changes.

Because I need to stay at home, I am producing more waste than usual – what should I do?

It’s more important than ever to make sure we avoid additional waste, as this will take pressure off our collection services while helping us to protect the environment. Every bit you cut down on will make a difference in allowing the service to run smoothly.

Remember that you can recycle all your household plastic packaging, glass bottles and jars and food and drink cans in your pink recycling sacks. Paper and card can be recycled in your blue boxes and food waste in the blue bin. Anything else – such as kitchen roll and tissues can be disposed of in your black sack - if you are affected by Coronavirus please click here for additional actions you should be taking with your waste.

Some easy actions you can take to reduce the amount of waste you produce are swapping single-use items by reusable ones (for example replacing kitchen roll by washable dishcloths) or buying lose fruits and vegetables. To reduce food waste, you can click here to find useful tips on food storage and advice on meal planning

 

I have run out of recycling (pink, clear or food waste) sacks, what should I do?

Regular sack deliveries are still taking place as normal for the moment – please check the delivery schedule online.
Any additional recycling and food waste sacks can be requested using MySouthend.

Household Waste and Recycling Centres

Please have a look at our dedicated page for questions related to Household Waste and Recycling Centres.

Street cleansing

Are you still emptying litter and dog bins around the borough?

Yes, we’re still emptying litter and dog waste bins in the borough.

Are street cleaning services operating as normal?

Yes, the street cleansing services are operating as normal.
We are monitoring the streets closely to remove fly-tips and waste wherever needed, and street cleaning crews are servicing litter bins to make sure that the Borough continues to be clean and safe. However, street cleansing resources may be drawn from to support the delivery of priority waste and recycling services.

Other questions

How can I support the collection and street cleaning crews?

There are lots of things we can all do to support the teams that continue to deliver critical front-line services.

  • Consider where you park your vehicle – with more of us staying at home and parking on residential streets, it is harder to get the lorries down the road to collect your waste. If a rubbish truck cannot get in, then it is likely that the same will apply to emergency services such as the fire brigade and ambulances.
  • Lessen the amount of waste you are presenting – if you have items ready to take to the HWRCs, or were thinking of having a spring clean or clearing out your shed, please store them responsibly at home until restrictions are relaxed, instead of putting them in your household collection. If every household puts out more waste than usual, the collection vehicles will fill up quicker, meaning it takes longer to collect and additional strain is placed on collection crews. HWRCs are open during normal hours but in line with the current guidelines, we strongly advise that you should only travel to a recycling centre to dispose of waste that you cannot safely store at home.
  • Please put ALL used tissues, paper hand towels and disposable cleaning cloths securely within disposable rubbish bags. 
  • Please make sure that all recycling and rubbish sacks are tied securely when you put them out for collection. Click here for information on how to present your waste correctly.
  • To help us all stay safe, we need everyone to tie their rubbish bags securely and make sure their recycling is clean and dry. If you are self-isolating, please follow the Government’s advice on disposing of your waste.
I would like to thank the crew for their hard work – how can I do this?

The safest way is to send in a compliment using our compliments, comments and complaints process.
Social distancing advice applies as much to our front-line workers as to everyone else, so please observe the social distancing requirements (click here). They will appreciate a smile, wave or a kind word from a distance.

What precautions are being put in place to protect residents and crews from Coronavirus?

Veolia's refuse collection and street cleansing teams are classed as key workers by the Government. As such throughout this uniquely challenging situation, they continue to provide essential services to help protect our community and public health.
 
Southend-on-Sea Borough Council and Veolia take their responsibilities around Coronavirus very seriously. The health and safety of all staff and the communities we serve is our top priority, and collection processes are being carefully managed. Working within the practical requirements of the job and the individual needs of employees and the local needs of the communities it serves, Veolia is following Government and its own operational guidelines and is taking all essential steps to guarantee the health of the workforce and members of the public.
 
We are extremely proud of the way the teams are rising to the challenge  of maintaining collection services and helping to keep the town clean and tidy. Please bear with us as we focus on key areas of service delivery and support our teams on the front line by following all Government advice given to the general public.

If you have symptoms that may be caused by COVID-19, have received a positive test result, or live in the same household as someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, please store your personal waste (e.g. used tissues and disposable cleaning cloths) securely within disposable bags. When appropriate, these bags should be securely tied and placed into another bag and securely tied or sealed. Please keep this waste separate from other bin bags. This waste must be stored for at least 72 hours before being put in your usual domestic or household waste bin.

Other household waste can be disposed of as normal and put out for collection on your usual day.

Which public toilets have been closed and why?

All public toilets are now open, with the exception of Chalkwell Esplanade which are closed for essential maintenance.

Please follow this guidance when using the toilet facilities

  • maintain social distancing of at least 2 meters whilst queuing and using the toilet facilities.
  • wash your hands regularly, whilst the toilets are cleaned regularly, we advise visitors to observe recommended hygiene practices: do not touch your face and to wash your hands regularly.
  • bring your own hand sanitiser when out in public places.
  • follow Government Guidance keep up to date with UK Government guidance by visiting the Gov.uk website for details.

For locations and facilities available please click to see Southend Borough Council's public toilets directory.

Are you still supporting litter-picking and volunteering activities?

To ensure we are able to implement the Government's advice regarding social distancing we will be temporarily suspending all volunteer litter-picking activities. This includes the support we normally provide for individual and group litter-picks, and therefore can neither lend you equipment nor collect your bags at this time. We are also unable to accept any new volunteers for the street champion and litter picking volunteering opportunities. We will review this regularly in line with Government advice and hope to resume these activities as soon as this public health issue has passed. Thank you for your understanding and support during these unprecedented times.