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»A woman who suffers from angina was forced to struggle to carry her rubbish 100 yards from her house, after Havering Council changed the collection point for her road.

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The council say the change was made after refuse workers said they had suffered a barrage of abuse and threatening behaviour from a resident while they were collecting rubbish in Willoughby Drive, Rainham.

The first incident, according to the council, was on July 20, when refuse collectors did not take some bags not containing domestic waste. The council says several individuals were involved.

The second alleged incident was on August 2, when the council said workers were again threatened, which resulted in the council writing to residents to tell them about the change of pick-up for their next collection.

‘Aggression’

It said: “This incident has been reported to the police. The London Borough of Havering and its contractors will not tolerate threatening behaviour or aggression to the refuse collectors who are trying to carry out their duties.”

But resident June Russell, 68, said she felt like she was being punished for the incident in her street. The Russells were not involved in either incident.

She had to struggle to take the rubbish out the following day, and has complained to the council, which said it would now arrange an alternative collection for her.

June said: “The new collection place was 100 yards away. That’s fine if you are young and able bodied, but my husband is 74, and has had a brain haemorrhage. I’m 4ft 6 and have rheumatoid arthritis so it is not easy for us to take it.

“My husband and daughter and myself took it down, but it was a struggle. My daughter took the lightest bag. Now I have got angina pains from taking it. I don’t need this, and it seems unfair. When I called up waste collection, they said I have got assisted collection because my neighbour offered to do it.”

A council spokesman said in a statement: “Due to unacceptable levels of intimidation and repeated threats of violence, our waste crews have withdrawn collections from Willoughby Drive. Until we know it is safe to resume standard collections, we have told residents we will collect their waste from the corner of York Road.

“We have written to Mrs Russell to explain how we will continue to help her and arrange an alternative collection.”

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