Baffled mum ‘fined £100’ after leaving a cardboard box on top of her green bin

A mum claims she was fined £100 for leaving an empty cardboard box – on top of the green bin.

Rebecca Slater was left “baffled” after she was told to cough up the sum in the recycling mishap.

The mum-of-two, who has lived in Mutley for four years, says she has been leaving empty cardboard boxes outside her home for refuse collectors ‘for years’

She says she can’t fit it into her green bin as it fills up too quickly.

But now she’s been left fuming after receiving a call on Monday from someone ‘from the council’, who told her she has been hit with the £100 Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN).

A spokesperson for Plymouth City Council told Plymouth Live they were unable to comment on a ‘criminal investigation’, and could not confirm or deny whether Rebecca has been fined.

The baffled mum said: “I had no warning or anything; I’ve been doing this for years. That box is my dog’s food that gets delivered, and we’ve got one green bin for the whole family.

“They rang me and said it like I was being arrested. She said the green box is owned by Plymouth Highways, she said I’d put the box on top of the green box and it wasn’t allowed.

“I thought they would’ve given me a warning first or something.”

Rebecca claims she was told by the Plymouth Highways on the phone worker that she needed to go and collect a second green bin.

“I said it’s not essential travel,” said the angry mum. “Telling me to go and get a green bin when we’re in a lockdown? I’ve been on their website, it says it can take up to six weeks for a new bin.

“So where else am I meant to put it when my bin’s full? I’m just baffled that they’ve wasted their time to make that phone call and fine me £100.”

Rebecca says she hasn’t yet received a letter in the post regarding the FPN, but is adamant she will ‘not be paying’ it.

“I’m going to let them take me to court,” she said.

“There’s no way I’m paying £100 for putting a box on top of their green thing or whatever it is. It’s not like it’s all the time, they could’ve just waited and it would’ve been gone when the bin men came, like they did today.

“They got it in just before the collection. [The lady on the phone] said it was one of their Highways people that had spotted it.

“I thought, ‘What neighbour would report me?’ But she said it was one of their Highways people. It’s been there since February 9. I said, ‘Yeah, because the green bins are every two weeks, and tomorrow is my green bin day.”

The cardboard box has since been collected by green refuse collectors, but the distressed mum says she’s never been ‘fined’ before.