Bin collections in North Ayrshire will take place every three weeks from 2019, a new council strategy has revealed.

And households will be receiving a new purple bin solely for cans, plastics and glass with the current blue bin being kept for paper and cardboard only.

The details were agreed at North Ayrshire Council’s Cabinet yesterday (Tuesday) and it comes exactly two months after NAC said no changes were planned.

The proposals, which were be considered by Cabinet on Tuesday, form part of an overall ‘Zero Waste Strategy 2018- 2022’.

The strategy aims to increase recycling to over 60 per cent by 2020, to meet the Scottish Government’s ‘Zero Waste Plan’ recycling targets.

This target will increase further to 70 per cent by 2025.

It also forms part of the Council’s commitment to the nationwide Household Recycling Charter that sets out to ensure consistent bin collections across Scotland.

In North Ayrshire, currently 55.3 per cent of waste is recycled, but studies have shown that around 71 per cent of the rubbish in the average grey bin could be recycled or composted, but is instead sent to landfill – showing that there’s significant room for improvement.

The proposals aim to maximise recycling by giving households additional capacity.

Among these is the introduction of a new 240 litre purple bin for glass, cans and plastics.

This will free up space in the blue bin which will instead be used for paper and cardboard only.

Both of these recycling bins will be collected on a three-weekly cycle along with the grey general waste bin.

This will be supported by a hygiene waste collection which can be requested for households that need to dispose of nappies and non-clinical medical related waste.

This, along with the brown bin, for food and garden waste, would be collected fortnightly. The waste and recycling collection services on Arran will be reviewed separately.

A North Ayrshire Council spokesperson, said: “All local authorities in Scotland have been set a target by the Scottish Government to recycle at least 60 per cent of household waste by 2020.

“Our recycling performance is currently one of the best in the country, but with these new Government targets, we simply cannot stand still and need to keep improving.

“Where Councils have already made similar changes, they are reporting an increase in recycling and a reduction in waste being sent to landfill, which is excellent for our local environment. We have therefore developed our own plans by taking advice and learning from other local authorities to ensure they are robust and go some way to ensure North Ayrshire doesn’t fall short of the Government’s target.

“It will give us 16 months to inform residents of the changes, support them in the new recycling process and implement what’s required ahead of the changes coming into effect in April 2019.

“We appreciate that many of our residents already do a great deal in terms of recycling and hope that they continue to support our efforts to help protect and enhance our local environment for future generations.”

The strategy also outlines how the Council will be looking at specific areas where bin storage space is an issue to identify if communal bins or underground waste storage systems could help relieve the problem and improve the overall appearance of amenities.

In response to an enquiry about how no changes were planned in October, A North Ayrshire Council spokesperson said: “At the time of the inquiry, we were considering a number of options, undergoing further research and nothing had been agreed.

“It is only now that we are in a position to confirm that these changes will be considered by Cabinet.”