A SCOTTISH council has been accused of splashing £32,000 of taxpayers’ cash on 97 giant Daleks.
The 5ft tall recycling bins are being installed by Scottish Borders Council in the centres of 22 towns and villages after it was awarded Government funding.
But the appearance of the giant bins have been mocked by members of the local community, who have made comparisons to Doctor Who’s most famous foe.
Daleks, a fictional extraterrestrial race of mutants, first appeared on television in 1963.
The terrifying cyborgs soon gained cult-status with Dr Who fan’s, even entering major dictionaries including the Oxford English Dictionary.
Now four alien-looking bins will be stationed in Selkirk – just two weeks after the area received £750,000 from Historic Scotland to refurbish its town centre.
Selkirk community councillor, Jim Gibson, said: “We are trying to address the aesthetic value of this town and are then given these bins.
“The name Dalek comes to mind when I saw it. How can anyone design that? There are loads of designs on the internet which are much better than that.”
Fellow community councillor Iain King added: “They are nearly 5ft high, 3ft wide and 3ft deep.
“They are going to be obstructing wheelchairs, prams and those who are short-sighted will walk into them.
“They will be an eyesore and if we are protecting the local environment this will not be a good way of going about it.”
The community council has raised concerns with Scottish Borders Council, complaining that the units are unattractive and that they could obstruct footpaths.
Community council secretary Alistair Pattullo said: “It is a good idea but I can’t see this is the High Street. There is not enough room.”
Local Selkirk resident, Tommy Combe, said: “People who throw litter in the street will continue to do that. I think they are pretty pointless.”
Another local David Firth added: “Are the council playing Big Brother by saying ‘you will like it or lump it?
“We don’t need this in the town centre – we have enough bins.”
Scottish Borders Council representative Gordon Edgar said the authority had to find ways of increasing its recycling.
He said: “We have targets to hit for recycling and if we don’t, we are fined.”
Scottish Borders Council neighbourhood area manager said: “The council’s waste services team has applied for and been awarded funding from the Scottish Government to introduce on-street recycling bins into a number of town centres and parks across the Scottish Borders.
“Following the introduction of the Waste (Scotland) Regulations 2012, councils are required to seek further methods of reducing waste sent to landfill and increasing the capture of valuable recycling materials.
“These new bins aim to capture the types of recyclable materials that we all have in our possession when on the go, for example, drinks cans, plastic bottles, newspapers and food packaging, but which either end up being left on the street or placed in a litter bin.”
Mr Blackie said the council would monitor the use of the bins.