Reading Borough Council (RBC) is looking to charge an extra couple of pounds for its garden waste collection service over the next few years.

Garden waste will rise this year by 20 per cent from £50 to £60, but the council has now proposed adding an additional extra fee in line with inflation for the following two years.

The plans - part of the council’s draft Medium Term Financial Strategy - could see green waste charges go up to £61.32 and £62.67 in 20/21 and 21/22.

RBC expects to raise £180,000 with its increase to £60 this year, followed by an additional £18,000 a year from April 2020 from raising the charge in line with inflation, currently around 2.2 per cent.

The government is currently consulting on whether to make garden waste collection free for all.

Reader Dawn Downes said: "I think £50 is more than enough as it is."

Cllr Sophia James, lead member for Neighbourhoods & Communities, said: “Thousands of Reading households are continuing to enjoy the benefits of the Council’s convenient green bin collection service.

“Members of the scheme do not have to worry about driving to the recycling centre to dispose of their garden waste but can have it collected from their home by our professional and reliable Steetcare team.

“I would encourage existing subscribers to renew before 13th March to ensure they do not suffer any break in service.”

Reading Borough Council began charging for household collections in 2017 in a bid to cope with the running costs after deep cuts in central government funding.

The annual subscription for 2019/20 is £60 for up to two green bins to be collected per property or £20 for households with one or two green bags.

In 2011, the then new Labour minority council scrapped a proposed £22.50 annual charge for the service, reinstating free garden waste collection.

Councillor Paul Gittings, then lead member for Environment and Sustainability, said: “The environmental benefits of free garden waste collections are there for all to see.”

RBC said it reviews all fees and charges on an annual basis, including benchmarking with other local authorities.