A PLANNED strike by Wirral bin men has been averted after unions and council contractor Biffa reached agreement in an ongoing pay dispute.

Biffa had been in dispute with the Unite union in a row over pay and conditions and a strike was due to take place tomorrow, causing disruption during the Open Golf Championship.

But after a meeting with conciliation service ACAS the two sides reached an agreement that was accepted by all Biffa staff.

A Biffa spokesman said: "For all concerned, we are glad that patient negotiation has prevailed, and would like to thank ACAS for its help."

He added the agreement was "good news" for Wirral residents as their valued recycling, refuse and street cleansing services are safeguarded.

The union’s 190 members were balloted on July 4 and voted in favour of possible industrial action.

Brian Nelson, local officer for Unite, had said the strike could take place on July 18 when more than 200,000 people were expected to descend on the borough for the golf.

The ballot came exactly a year after more than 200 Biffa staff voted to strike.

At the time, union officials blamed the situation on reductions to local government budgets.

The action was averted after a deal was reached.