THE company responsible for picking up kerbside rubbish and recycling in Somerset has apologised for missed and delayed collections.

A Somerset Waste Partnership spokesperson said the problem has been caused by "extremely heavy loads and increasing Covid-related staff absence".

They said: "We prioritise rubbish and clinical collections.

"If these are missed, crews should be back within two working days.

"If your recycling collection is missed, we will do our best to return in two working days.

"If we cannot get back in that time, we will return on your next scheduled collection day.

"We apologise for the inconvenience.

"Crews are working hard to catch up and we ask for your patience at this busy time."

Recycling collections missed yesterday (Tuesday, January 4) will be carried out next Monday.

They include areas of Frome in the Mendip district and Crewkerne, Merriott, South Petherton, Over Stratton, Wigborough and Yeabridge in South Somerset.

Crews returned yesterday to parts of Mendip and South Somerset where recycling collections were missed on Sunday (January 2).

Meanwhile, SWP has issued advice for people whose waste collections are missed or delayed.

People have been told they can use recycling sites for 'dry' items, while food waste should be home composted "where suitable", taken to a recycling site or put in the rubbish bin.

Householders who have too much for their recycling containers are being told to put excess items - apart from glass - in a cardboard box or another suitable container or ask neighbours if they have spare containers or space to share.