Privacy settings

LGO logogram

Review your privacy settings

Required cookies

These cookies enable the website to function properly. You can only disable these by changing your browser preferences, but this will affect how the website performs.

View required cookies

Analytical cookies

Google Analytics cookies help us improve the performance of the website by understanding how visitors use the site.
We recommend you set these 'ON'.

View analytical cookies

In using Google Analytics, we do not collect or store personal information that could identify you (for example your name or address). We do not allow Google to use or share our analytics data. Google has developed a tool to help you opt out of Google Analytics cookies.

Blackburn with Darwen Council (18 016 568)

Category : Environment and regulation > Refuse and recycling

Decision : Closed after initial enquiries

Decision date : 20 Mar 2019

The Ombudsman's final decision:

Summary: Mrs X complained about the Council’s waste collection from the end of a lane near her home. She says it has caused problems with residents using her land for waste collection. The Ombudsman should not investigate this complaint. This is because there is insufficient evidence of fault by the Council which would warrant an investigation.

The complaint

  1. The complainant, whom I shall call Mrs X, complains about the Council changing the waste collection point for her lane to the junction with the public highway near her home. She says residents leave waste on her land and cause obstruction. She says this causes friction with her neighbours and she wants the Council to restore individual collections.

Back to top

The Ombudsman’s role and powers

  1. We investigate complaints about ‘maladministration’ and ‘service failure’. In this statement, I have used the word ‘fault’ to refer to these. We must also consider whether any fault has had an adverse impact on the person making the complaint. I refer to this as ‘injustice’. We provide a free service, but must use public money carefully. We may decide not to start or continue with an investigation if we believe:
  • it is unlikely we would find fault, or
  • it is unlikely we could add to any previous investigation by the Council, or
  • it is unlikely further investigation will lead to a different outcome.

(Local Government Act 1974, section 24A(6), as amended)

Back to top

How I considered this complaint

  1. I have considered all the information which Mrs X submitted with her complaint. I have also considered the Council’s response and Mrs X has commented on the draft decision.

Back to top

What I found

  1. Mrs X lives near the end of an unadopted lane which serves several properties. The Council has changed its waste collection policy and now only collects waste bags from the end of the lane where it meets the public highway. Mrs X says this has caused problems with her neighbours because they leave waste on her land for several days sometimes.
  2. Mrs X complained to the Council about the problems. The Council wrote to the residents reminding them of the requirement to leave the waste on the public highway on the correct day for collection. The Council is entitled by law to specify where and when domestic waste should be placed for collection. Most councils have ended remote services to unadopted access and the residents in Mrs X’s land have failed to comply with the waste collection requirements.
  3. The Council only has power to act against waste issues relating to its own land. If Mrs X suffers abuse or trespass on her land she would need to involve the Police or a solicitor.

Back to top

Final decision

  1. The Ombudsman should not investigate this complaint. This is because there is insufficient evidence of fault by the Council which would warrant an investigation.

Investigator’s decision on behalf of the Ombudsman

Back to top

Investigator's decision on behalf of the Ombudsman

Print this page