A TERRIFIED binman was threatened at knife-point by a “homeless” thug who came “flying out” of a bin store during his rounds.

The key worker, who was targeted on Monday at communal flats in Saxon Gardens, Shoebury, dropped the waste and left the scene immediately.

Friends say the man has been off work since with stress and has been offered support by waste management firm Veolia UK.

One friend said: “He went to the bin store and someone came flying out holding something.

“He has been off work since with stress and it all sounded pretty frightening. He left half the work there.

“They are just trying to do a job and isn’t nice to have this happen to them.”

Another friend, who asked to be anonymous, said: “A man, who they think was homeless, was in Viking Court. The binmen shouted at the homeless man, he waved the knife about. This needs to be sorted, as the poor binmen are not well appreciated.”


Ian Gilbert, Labour leader of Southend Council, said the community will be saddened by the incident and feels for the worker involved.

He said: “Clearly it’s horrible for someone to go through this type of incident and it is very worrying.

“They do a great job and did especially in the Covid-19 pandemic over the last year and kept our basic services going.”

An Essex Police spokesman said: “We received a report of a disturbance, during which a man reported being threatened, in Viking Court, Shoebury, shortly after 1.20pm on Monday 15 November.

“No arrests have been made and our enquiries are ongoing.”

Martin Terry, councillor for public protection, said: “No one should be threatened for doing their job. This incident has quite rightly worried the crews, and we have been liaising with Essex Police on the matter.”

Stuart Atkinson, Senior Contract Manager, Veolia UK said the crew member was unharmed and will be provided with the appropriate mental health support.

He added: “We can confirm one of our collections team was threatened by a member of the public at Viking Court, Southend-on-Sea on Monday 15 November.

“Our crews work hard to keep essential services running across the borough and this type of abuse or threatening behaviour will not be tolerated.”