Wiltshire’s bin lorry drivers have voted to strike after rejecting a 2% pay offer from employer Hills Waste Solutions.

Drivers, refuse operatives and loaders are planning to walk out on 28 February in a move that will affect more than 250,000 homes.

The ballot saw more than 98% of workers voting to strike, on a return of almost 85%.

The dispute was sparked by the offer of a 2% pay award to the workers, who are employed by Hills Waste Solutions across three sites in Trowbridge, Salisbury and Calne.

GMB said the staff were “furious” at the offer which it said amounts to a real-terms pay cut. The staff are demanding a 7% wage rise which would take into account rising inflation.

The union also said the company had failed to negotiate meaningfully with GMB.

Nicola Nixon, GMB Regional Organiser, said: "We have today served notice on the employer and will at this point now be working with members arranging pickets for the first strike day.

"Time is running out if Hills want to get back around the table to discuss our members pay expectations of a seven per cent pay increase before any possible major disruption of waste and recycling collections for more than 250,000 homes.

“We can’t negotiate on our own and despite GMB having the largest membership, Hills have done nothing to make us think that’s going to change.

“We were told at our last meeting that there is an improved offer, but that they won't tell us what it is yet.

“It’s game playing - pure game playing.”

Hills Waste Solutions has yet to respond to MT’s request for comment.