A BIN collector in Blaenavon "had a hot cup of tea thrown at them" by a member of the public during a dispute over refuse collections, Torfaen council has alleged.

The local authority has "strongly condemned" the "unprovoked attack", which happened at 10.30am on Tuesday in New William Street, Blaenavon.

Police are investigating the claims, and Torfaen council has urged anyone with information to contact the force by calling 101.

According to the council, its staff member had been emptying purple-lidded bins (for non-recyclable household waste) and refused to empty a resident's green wheelie bin for garden waste. The dispute then escalated to the drink being thrown over the bin collector, the council alleges.

Councillor Mandy Owen, Torfaen's executive member for the environment, said the alleged attack was "totally unacceptable".

“We will not tolerate abusive behaviour by anyone against our colleagues," she added. "The crews are under extreme pressure at the moment due to the current Covid pandemic due to the increased quantities of waste that is being put out for collection.

"Our crews are doing a sterling job under extremely difficult times, so please respect them."

Anyone with information about this incident can also contact Torfaen council by emailing communitysafetyteam@torfaen.gov.uk