Countrystyle Recycling trying to ‘punish’ workers for cost of living pay demands 

Bin collections in Bexley, in South London, will halt during summer pay strikes, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Wednesday 29 June).

More than 100 workers, employed by Bexley council contractor Countrystyle Recycling, will begin a two-week strike on 12 July in a dispute over pay and working conditions.

Countrystyle has offered the workers a below-inflation pay deal and also wants to scrap a long-standing ‘job and finish’ clause in their contracts. This will mean workers are forced to stay at the depot when their work is finished.  

The deal has been rejected by Unite’s membership, who want a pay rise that better reflects the real inflation rate, RPI, which is running at 11.7 per cent.

Unite says that Countrystyle has already been making staff stay at work after their rounds have ended. Members have also reported that CCTV monitoring is being used to unfairly target workers.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Countrystyle’s bullyboy tactics and refusal to put forward a cost-of-living pay rise leave our members with no choice but to strike.

“Bexley council should be ashamed of the mistreatment going on at one of their contractors. A better deal needs to be put forward, or these strikes will go ahead with Unite’s full support.”

Unite regional officer Tabusam Ahmed added: “Our members are rightly asking for a pay rise that keeps up with rocketing prices. In response, Countrystyle is trying to punish them by scrapping a long-standing agreement.

“This dispute can end before strikes begin but it will mean Countrystyle treating these workers with decency and tabling an offer our members can accept. If the company refuses to do this, Bexley council should make them.”


For media enquires ONLY contact Unite communications officer Ryan Fletcher on 07849 090215.

Email: [email protected] 

Twitter: @unitetheunion Facebook: unitetheunion1 Instagram: unitetheunion


Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest union with members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Sharon Graham.