Herefordshire households could be paying £55 a year for a garden waste collection service from next year.

The government is currently urging all local authorities to provide separate garden waste collection services, and Herefordshire Council is surveying residents on the idea, which it says will “support the council’s vision to increase recycling rates”.

Its plan is to provide subscribing households with a 240-litre brown bin which would be collected fortnightly between March and October starting next year, giving 18 collections in total. As now, the waste would be composted.

Under the current system, garden waste is collected for free alongside other waste, but it has to be bagged in council garden waste sacks, which it sells at £6.50 for a roll of five.

This would be dropped if the new service is introduced. The council is surveying residents on the idea until tomorrow (Wednesday January 31).

The online survey asks simply: “If the council introduced this service at £55 per year would you subscribe? [Yes/No]”.

How Herefordshire compares with the neighbours:

Shropshire Council has no plans to bring in green waste collection charges, a spokesperson confirmed.

Malvern Hills District Council charges £85 for a first garden waste bin (£80 if by direct debit) and £70 each for any subsequent bins.

Forest of Dean District Council charges £55 for an annual garden waste “licence”, the same as the proposed sum for Herefordshire.

Monmouthshire County Council provides fortnightly garden waste collection from March to December, charging £50 a year for its 240-litre wheelie bins.

Powys County Council also has a subscription service, charging £40 a year for a 240-litre bin, £35 for a half-size bin or the same sum for a pack of 50 45-litre compostable paper sacks.

Further changes to waste collections in Herefordshire are planned, including weekly food waste collections from September.