A SINISTER looking army of invaders are on the march across Cornwall. These brooding aliens are making their presence felt in every street in the county. 

Whether you live in a town, the countryside or the middle of Bodmin Moor, you cannot escape them. Nowhere is safe. 

They are the Cornish cousins of Doctor Who’s Daleks; perhaps they should be known as a “Dreckly”. 

A “Dreckly” found its way to my house last week. Its approach was heralded by a low rumbling noise that grew louder and louder as it trundled across the concrete in front of my house. 

When I went to investigate what had disturbed our peaceful neighbourhood I found the “Dreckly” staring at me through the front door, alongside its little green alien sibling. 

It carried instructions from its leaders on planet “County Hall”, which is based in a galaxy many light years away known as “Cornwall Council”. 

The message stated the “Dreckly” was not yet operational and I should await further orders from planet County Hall. 

This of course is a rubbish revolution. I don’t mean that it’s not very good, although that remains to be seen, but a revolution in the way our rubbish is collected. 

The “Dreckly” is in fact a wheelie bin! 

Yes, we are getting a whole new range of waste receptacles to add to our already impressive number of boxes, bins and bags. 

But this is a big change. The “Dreckly” can consume rubbish for two weeks before it needs to evacuate its contents, so the name “Dreckly” seems more appropriate than ever. 

Meanwhile not only do we have to find room for this hulking great monster, but we also have to accommodate its siblings; yes the “Dreckly” comes with not one but two alien accomplices. 

Both of them will gobble up our food waste, but one is strictly an indoor creature, preferably inhabiting the kitchen, whereas the other one belongs firmly outside.

In our case its home will be in the garage alongside the “Dreckly” and their distant cousins “Blue Bag”, “Orange Bag”, “Red Bag” and “Black box”.

Sadly I assume it means our trusty old friend “Black Bin” will no longer be required, but I have yet to receive instructions from planet County Hall on what will happen to “Black Bin” when he is made redundant. 

We had already adopted two additional friendly little blue boxes to help us manage the picky dietary requirements of our brood of bags and boxes. 

Our two little blue boxes take up precious space in a kitchen cupboard but pay their way by managing the daily collection of paper, cardboard, plastic and tins. 

Once they are full we feed their contents to their larger brothers and sisters who live out in the garage and as I mentioned have very specific dietary needs. 

For instance “Blue bag” will only eat paper and “Orange” will only eat cardboard. “Red” is a little less fussy and will happily consume metal and plastic, but not all plastic! 

It’s almost a full time job keeping up with the current requirements of this rubbish family, now we have additional demanding members joining us. 

Along with my own two recycling boxes in the kitchen cupboard and the kitchen bin, I have now seven rubbish and recycling mouths to feed, so that’s ten in total in our house. 

There is of course no money from planet County Hall to pay for all this extra work we have to do for them; in fact the overlords there will be taxing us significantly more than last year.

I will be very interested to watch the roll out of this new waste management service.  Previous changes to rubbish collections in Cornwall have not always gone well. A few years ago when planet County Hall beamed in a new contractor from another planet, hundreds of bin collections disappeared into a black hole; mine included.

We covered the plight of missed collections on BBC Spotlight. I interviewed the councillor in charge of waste collections alongside a manager from the new contractors.

They were wheeled in front of a camera and joined the programme from planet County Hall via satellite. The positions they had to stand in to ensure both were in the shot made them look like two naughty schoolboys hauled before the Head Teacher. 

We were inundated with complaints from viewers whose bins hadn’t been emptied and it was my job to convey their anger to the councillor and the representative from the contractors. 

It demonstrated how much importance we all place on a reliable and efficient waste collection service. It’s one of the tangible services we all receive for that ever-rising council tax. 

So, this is a massive gamble. Will we recycle more? Will we diligently separate out our food waste? Or are we already overwhelmed by the various demands from our fussy family of bins, bags and boxes?

I am a massive supporter of recycling and I will try to do my absolute best to follow the orders from planet County Hall. I am also lucky that I have just enough space for all the extra bins we have to feed. I do wonder how some families will manage. 

The days of chucking everything in one bin are a dim and distant memory. I am not suggesting we go back to that, but I do miss the simplicity. 

Don’t tell planet County Hall I said that. They might order my “Dreckly” to exterminate me. 

Bye for now!