MISSED rubbish and recycling collections have caused "chaos" in Monmouthshire, residents say, as the local authority continues to adapt to its new waste policies.

Recently, the Free Press reported how Monmouthshire County Council (MCC) had apologised for teething problems with its new waste collection rota, which was rolled out on March 4.

"Since [that apology] it has got worse," Anthony Wilding of Glascoed said. "I'm pretty patient but we're getting desperate now.

"I'm fed up with all these plastic bags outside."

Carl Touhig, MCC's head of waste and street services, said crews had been "extremely busy" during the first month of the new scheme as they caught up on missed collections. Of around 320,000 collections in that time, he said, roughly 1,900 collections had been missed.

When the new scheme was rolled out, it was described by the local authority as "one of the biggest operational changes that Monmouthshire has undertaken".

The overhaul included a new, separate collection service for glass recycling, changes in collection times, and a new fleet of waste lorries.

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But the scale of the overhaul has done little to prevent widespread dissatisfaction from residents whose rubbish and recycling has not been picked up on the allotted days.

Mr Wilding said: "After I made calls, [the council] came and picked up two weeks' worth of recycling, but now they've missed them again.

"I've been on the phone but all they say is that they'll log it.

"It's no good apologising if they don't come through. I had my council tax bill last week and it's like rubbing salt in the wound."

Mr Touhig said high volumes of collections meant the council had been slower returning for missed collections, compounding the issue.

"Understandably residents became frustrated with our response times," he said.

Another complaint from residents is how their carefully-separated recycling has, in some cases, been thrown into one single compartment on the waste and recycling trucks.

One Chepstow resident who contacted the Free Press said: "Black bags collected Friday, yellow nappy bags collected in same chute. And then I follow the bin lorry to Five Lanes [Household Waste Recycling Centre] and all the rubbish in both sides of the collection lorry were upended in the same area. Why oh why are we the public bothering?"

Mr Wilding also said he had seen spearated recycling being picked up and put into one container.

When asked about this, Mr Touhig said missed collections were picked up as single streams, when possible, but in some instances had been picked up in one collection and then later separated at the disposal point.

He added: "I apologise to all residents who have had collection issues over the last four weeks. Improvements arising from the changes are beginning to materialise and the position is getting better every day. I recognise that generic responses do little to allay the concerns of residents when improvements are yet to be seen.

"It is very difficult to give detailed responses to enquiries on social media as we need specific details so we hope residents will use the app service to report missed collections. This will allow us to investigate and resolve the issues.”

When asked how long it would take to solve the collection issues, Mr Touhig said: "We would expect the majority of teething problems to be resolved during the first four to six weeks as it takes at least two cycles of the new collection rounds to bed in. Numbers of missed collections have dropped substantially and schedules are now bedding in. Where there have been repeated missed collections we are working with residents to resolve the issues."