BOLTON Council will consider making it easier for households to get bigger bins as a review into slim bins has been approved.

A motion to review the process of requesting 240-litre bins was unanimously supported by all parties at the town hall last night.

Another proposal to tackle fly-tipping by looking at lowering the collection fee for bulky items, which is currently a minimum of £30 for up to five items, was also approved.

Newly-elected Farnworth and Kearsley First councillor Paul Heslop described the current situation as "Dickensian".

He said: "In my view, refuse collection is an absolutely crucial service that the council should get right. The borough is going back in time when it comes to household waste."

But Labour defended the success of the slim bins which save the council around £4m every year and has seen recycling rates rise.

Cllr Nick Peel told the chamber that the introduction of the 140-litre residual waste bin in 2016 has led to an increase in recycling of more than 10 per cent.

He reminded councillors that Bolton is one of the top 40 councils for recycling and said around 40 per cent of requests for bigger bins have been granted.

Currently, residents who use all recycling facilities available to them and still struggle to fit their rubbish in slim grey bins can apply for a waste audit.

The former environmental services cabinet member said that 4,400 households have been given bigger bins following a waste audit, including 254 in Farnworth.

He said: "You will continue to spread the myth that the council operates a 'one size fits all' policy. It does not. And 4,400 people, including your constituents, will testify to this."

Cllr Peel supported the motion which called for a policy development group to look at the issue.

However, he asked whether the Tories would get rid of slim bins altogether now that they are in power, referring to previous election pledges.

He said: "I'm interested in whether you intend to honour that pledge that you made to the people of Bolton or whether you are just full of it."

Council leader David Greenhalgh dismissed Cllr Peel's claims as "lies", saying that the Conservatives did not promise to get rid of slim bins in the most recent election.

He supported a review of slim bins as well as agreeing to look at reducing collection fees for bulky items in a bid to tackle fly-tipping.

The new leader rebuked claims by Cllr Peel that fly-tipping has not increased in Bolton in recent years.

He said: "The people of this borough who travel around on a daily basis will decide if they feel fly-tipping has increased. The data is collected for council land. Farmers land are strewn with fly-tipping. The data is not a reflection of what the reality is.”

UKIP leader Sean Hornby said better communication regarding waste and what can be recycled is needed.

Lib Dem councillor David Wilkinson described recycling as "quick" and "simple", but also said education is necessary.

The Westhoughton representative said people who deliberately throw rubbish without recycling should be prosecuted.

He said: "Young people are leading the debate about what we do for the sake of this planet and recycling is one of the most simple things we can do."