London celebrities threaten to boycott council tax over bin collections row
Shirley Valentine actor Tom Conti, fashion designer Nicole Farhi and playwright Sir David Hare are all threatening not to pay their council tax in a row about fortnightly bin collections.
Camden Council in North London, where they all live, used to collect rubbish once a week. However, in a bid to cut costs, it has cut back the collections to once every fortnight instead. However, the move has not gone down well in plush areas of London, including Hampstead, Primrose Hill and Belsize Park, which are all well known for being celebrity haunts.
Mr Conti, 75, said he pays £2,719 per year in council tax but wasn’t getting enough for his money. He said it was shocking that the council wasted so much money and did not collect the rubbish. He added: “It will mean dirtier streets. I don’t know whether they are targeting richer neighbourhoods on purpose but it wouldn’t surprise me.”
Meanwhile, Ms Farhi who is married to Sir David branded the changes ridiculous, asking where she was meant to store her rubbish while waiting for a collection. She pointed out that she already pays more for her council tax than many people because she has a large house, and demanded that she get the same service as other boroughs of London. Ms Farhi said she was also concerned that less frequent rubbish collections would attract vermin such as rats and foxes.
Other celerity residents set to be affected include One Direction singer Harry Styles, chat show host Jonathan Ross and comedian David Walliams.
Camden Council said it was taking a road by road approach to bin collections, adding that it had made sure those homes will be serviced just once a fortnight have big enough storage areas so that rubbish does not spill out into the streets.