OPPOSITION is growing against proposed changes to Wirral's bin collection service.

The council is investigating bringing in a new food waste collection to force residents to recycle more.

The scheme would see every household receiving a new small bin to store scrapped food, which would be collected every week.

The problem is the existing "general waste" green wheelies could be collected only once every three weeks - or if the present fortnightly frequency is maintained, they would be reduced in size.

The green bins at present hold 240 litres of rubbish while the slimline version contains 140 litres.

Oxton Liberal Democrat councillor Stuart Kelly is campaigning against the changes.

He told the Globe: "We all want to see improved rates of recycling but last year the council were talking about reducing the size of the green bin or moving to three weekly collections.

"Such a move would be unacceptable to many people in Wirral and I have presented a petition in excess of 4,000 signatures in opposition to that proposal.

"I would call on the cabinet to reassure residents that their green bin will be unaffected by any future arrangements they may wish to bring forward."

The proposed "food caddy" collection is designed to increase recycling rates in the borough to 50% of all household waste.

While no final decision on the new service has been reached, new council environment chief Cllr Phill Brightmore said recycling "needs to stay at the top of the agenda" and has put forward an interim plan to help residents recycle more.

He said: “Since coming into this post a few months ago, I have been reviewing the consultation feedback and talking to residents all across the borough.

“It’s absolutely clear to me that Wirral residents care deeply about the local environment and want to recycle more.

"It’s our job to help them and we must do better.

“Over the coming weeks we will be launching a new programme to provide advice, encourage recycling and make sure our residents have all the tools and information they need to dispose of their household waste in an environmentally friendly way.

“We still have a decision to make on introducing the food waste collection service.

"We’ve got to make sure we get it right, and I’ll be working with colleagues across the Liverpool City Region in the coming months to make sure we come up with the most efficient and cost effective option for Wirral residents, which helps all of us recycle more and improve the environment.”

The new plan to help residents recycle more will start in the coming weeks and will involve:

Workshops and events throughout Wirral, demonstrating new ideas for how household items can be recycled, repaired or reused.

A new communications campaign, making sure every resident has the information they need on what they can recycle and how to do it.

Visiting schools, youth centres and community organisation to talk about recycling and giving residents face to face advice and support

Making sure every resident has the right bins in decent condition to help them recycle as much as they can.

The Liverpool City Region is currently reviewing waste collection across Merseyside, with Wirral playing a leading role in the discussions.

Proposals for how the service will be improved to increase recycling should be available later this year.