Cleaning services in Rushmoor are set to improve while costing taxpayers less money, thanks to a new deal signed by the local authority.
Rushmoor Borough Council has awarded a new 10-year contract to provide bin collections, street cleaning, public toilet cleaning, grounds and parks maintenance.
The new contract, with Hampshire-based Serco Environmental Services, will maintain weekly bin collections while also introducing a number of new services.
At a cost of £3.8 million per year, it will save the council £650,000 a year compared to its existing cleaning contract with Veolia, which ends on July 30.
All of the 100 people currently working in Rushmoor for Veolia will have the chance to transfer to Serco when its contract begins on July 31.
Councillor Martin Tennant, RBC’s cabinet member for environment, said: “We know that a weekly rubbish collection is very important to our residents, so we are really pleased that these will continue.
“We are confident the new contract will deliver on quality and cost, helping us to create a cleaner and greener Rushmoor and working with residents to increase recycling.”
Among the improvements will be the introduction of a new cleaning machine to tackle dog poo in parks and streets, plus a fleet of hybrid vehicles and quieter electric equipment.
More workmen will be based in the borough’s parks and there will be a dedicated gardening team covering the cemeteries.
A new customer website will make it easier for residents to report problems, while 20 local people will be recruited as “community champions” to report issues to the council.
A community nursery will be established at Aldershot’s Manor Park and a mobile “coffee pod” will tour Rushmoor’s parks, with the proceeds going to charity.
RBC and Serco will work towards the creation of the borough’s first “organic park”, where no pesticides or herbicides are used.
The contract provides two major weed sprays a year, to compensate for a reduction in service by Hampshire County Council.
Street sweeping vehicles will be designed to weed spray while they clean, to control the growth of weeds on roads and pavements.
Serco’s teams will also spend time tackling areas where grass verges have begun to encroach on the pavement.
Serco will offer a new commercial waste service for businesses, and a chargeable wheelie bin cleaning service.
Residents will also be able to recycle extra small electrical items on top of their blue wheelie bins, in a partnership with The Trussell Trust charity.
Robin Davies, of Serco, said: “All of our plans have been developed by listening to local people, so we can provide a first-class service that really meets the community’s needs.