A binman who says his bosses banned him from wearing shorts defiantly completed his rounds in a hi vis kilt.
With temperatures soaring above 25c, Lee Moran, 50, mounted his striking protest after bosses at York City Council told him he had to remain covered up.
Despite campaigning to wear shorts for years in the height of summer, the dad-of-three was told that health and safety rules didn't permit it.
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But when Lee found out this wasn’t true, he claims his managers confessed they’d actually prevented binmen from wearing shorts to protect their "public image".
Bizarrely, one manager did say that "kilts" were permitted, so on Monday (June 11), he donned fluorescent orange kilt in protest at their cold-hearted policy.
Lee said the response to his protest had been "absolutely amazing" and he hoped to convince the council to change its approach before the temperatures rise next week.
He said: “For the last five years, I’ve been asking about wearing shorts, and they’ve just slung health and safety at me left right and centre."
He said even some of the City of York councillors called him to give him their support.
Lee said he'd always took his managers word for it on the policy, but when he did his own digging online he was shocked to discover it was untrue.
“One of the managers then admitted it was basically due to ‘reputation’, so I said, ‘We’re sweating, doing hard work in the sun just to look good for the public?’
"We’re sweating in these trousers, we’re at risk of collapse.’”
Lee said he ordered the £60 kilt online from a supplier in Canada and had put it on only after his suspicious managers had made inquiries about his clothes on that day.
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He said: "As soon as the manager rang up, I got changed into the kilt and worked all day in it."
Lee, who at sites works across the city of York, Monday to Friday, said a lot of local residents had sympathised with his protest.
He said: "They wondered why I was wearing a kilt, so I explained to them and they said, ';That’s ridiculous, I can’t believe they won’t let you wear shorts'."
Lee said he hoped that York City Council would change their policy, especially as another nearby local authority was letting their binmen ditch their trousers.
But he had concerns they weren’t acting fast enough, with thermostats set to rise above 40c next week in some parts of the country.
“We’re saying we need this now – we don’t want to be waiting another week, it’s going to be red hot next week.
“They said, ‘these things take time’, but we haven’t got time.
"The weather isn’t going to wait for us.”
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