A former environment minister has branded the council complacent in its attitude to climate change.

Michael Meacher, Labour MP for Oldham West and Royston and former environment minister, also accused Sutton Council of being "audacious" in publicising green policies while its recycling performance is being bettered by other councils.

Mr Meacher was in Sutton to meet Emily Brothers, Labour's prospective parliamentary candidate for Sutton and Cheam, last week.

Mr Meacher said: "I’m appalled by the complacency shown by Sutton Liberal Democrats in tackling climate change.

"They’ve got the audacity to claim to be advancing green policies at the same time as their performance in recycling is sliding.

"I understand they have pulled stunts that have included the dumping of rubbish in the High Street to gain publicity, but this isn’t any answer to securing an enduring environment for future generations."

The former environment secretary, who held the post under Tony Blair from 1997 to 2003, referenced figures that show Sutton once led the way in terms of recycling in London, but has recently been overtaken by many boroughs including neighbouring Croydon.