A new high-tech ‘big belly’ seagull-proof bin is being tried out in St Andrews.
The bin automatically compacts rubbish – so can take the place of up to eight regular bins – and transmits data to say when it needs emptied.
But all the benefits come at a cost – £4500 per bin.
The trial is part of a campaign by BID (Business Improvement District) St Andrews and St Andrews Environmental Network (StAndEN) to clean up the town centre.
“We hope St Andreans, and our visitors, will appreciate the benefits of these types of bins,” said David Angus, the BID’s clean and green manager. “They can replace so many of the bins we already have on the streets, and provide increased capacity whilst reducing the number of times a bin needs to be emptied.”
Jane Kell of St Andrews Environmental Network was equally enthusiastic: “Seagulls are a problem in St Andrews, getting into bins and scattering the rubbish, so the ‘big belly’ bins are great at preventing vermin access.
“Because they need emptying less often, they could free up staff to get on with other jobs around the town.”
The trial has the backing of the town’s community council and Preservation Trust, and David and Jane are investigating funding streams that would allow StAndEN and the BID to buy or hire the bins for key areas of the town.
Fife Council, which had previously trialled the system at Anstruther, has agreed to manage the bins if they are installed but has indicated it could not fund the purchase.