RESIDENTS in Blaenau Gwent could face fines if they fail to sufficiently recycle in the future.

Council waste wardens are set to be sent out to monitor rubbish collections and advise residents how to recycle more, as a result of a continued failure to hit recycling targets set by the Welsh Government.

And as a last resort, where residents regularly put out too much waste instead of recycling, Blaenau Gwent council says it is prepared to take enforcement action, with £100 fines being issued.

Councillor Garth Collier, deputy leader of Blaenau Gwent Council said: "I would like to thank residents who make every effort to recycle their waste every week. However, we are still not achieving our challenging recycling targets set by Welsh Government.

"There is a lot of room for improvement and we are targeting those people who do not make the effort to recycle with these changes. We want to help everyone recycle as much as they can and our wardens will be visiting all areas to provide help and advice so that residents can reduce the amount of waste placed in their wheelie bins for collection."

He also said warnings would be given before fines are issued though.

In February, Gwent councils were given a share of £7.5 million to improve recycling rates, with Blaenau Gwent given £829,637 after failing to hit the 58 per cent recycling target set by the Welsh Government.

It recorded the lowest recycling rate in the whole of Wales at 56.8 per cent.

In response to the enforcement news, Cllr Godfrey Thomas, of the Beaufort ward, said: "Recycling is a big problem in the county.

"We have to recycle and the majority of people realise we have to do it.

"I think Blaenau Gwent got off to a bad start with recycling but this different method can make an impact.

"I am very passionate about my community, it is important to look after Blaenau Gwent."

But residents have previously hit out at the trolibocs scheme used by the council – a stack of three recycling boxes on a wheeled trolley unit.

The top box is for paper, the middle box is for household metal or plastic packaging like cans, foil, bottles and punnets, and the bottom box is for glass and cardboard.

But residents previously protested when they were introduced in 2015, saying they give households less recycling space than bags, are difficult to move for disabled and elderly people and could present a health and safety risk.

Deb Gronow said her 83-year-old mother - a Beaufort resident - had also experienced other problems.

"She recycles religiously but she’s on an assisted list so operatives are supposed to come into her property to wheel out the trolley," Ms Gronow said.

"However, on many occasions they fail to do this. This has happened again just this week.

“I live in Blackwood in Caerphilly where we have mixed recycling, so I can compare both systems. In my opinion the method used by Caerphilly is much better."