Urge to reopen recycling centres amid more fly-tipping
PRESSURE is growing on councils to reopen their waste recycling centres, closed under the coronavirus lockdown, amid reports of fly-tipping incidents around the area.
An MP and residents have urged local councils running facilities in the New Forest and Christchurch to ease restrictions following the closures last month, partly due to staff shortages.
Two fly-tipping incidents were reported this week at Deerleap in Ashurst and in Lyndhurst Road, Bransgore.
One Bransgore resident said of the mess: “This is just awful. They need to open the tips as it will only get worse.”
by Tobias Ellwood, MP for Bournemouth East, for it to reopen its three tips, including the one at Wilverley Road in Christchurch, and said there had been no increase in fly-tipping incidents.rejected a callBCP Council
Mr Ellwood said: “There’s a steady thoroughfare of people wanting to use the recycling centre at any juncture, and there will be a cumulative pressure – even more so now.
“You would anticipate spacing restrictions to be introduced as a reflection of the government guidance, and this must be observed.
“We are seeing a nation that wants to make this work but there is a reality that life goes on, and this would help avoid a build-up of fly-tipping and waste not being disposed of appropriately.”
But the council’s cabinet member for the environment, Cllr Felicity Rice, said until rules were changed on non-essential travel, the tips would remain closed to help stem the spread of the coronavirus.
“Keeping the tips open now would go against government advice on non-essential travel and therefore these sites will remain closed until this advice changes,” she said.
runs the local household waste recycling centres (HWRCs) at Efford in Lymington, Somerley near Ringwood, and Marchwood.Hampshire County CouncilIn the New Forest,
Cllr David Harrison, who represents Totton and Marchwood on HCC, said: “Some people are expressing frustration at having nowhere to dispose of their waste. We are also seeing increased instances of fly-tipping in the area.
“The government have issued recent guidance which states that visiting a household waste facility is a ‘reasonable’ thing to do. The decision to keep the Marchwood facility closed is therefore down to Hampshire County Council.”
Cllr Harrison added that he understood why it had been closed until now, but said he felt the Marchwood facility could be opened safely, providing new procedures were put in place to protect employees and the public.
An HCC spokesperson also said that the authority’s records did not show a rise in the tonnage of fly-tipping in the first three weeks of the lockdown, but there could have been a rise in “reported incidents”. Reports of bonfires had increased, she added.
“We are working with our contractor on plans for the safe reopening of the HWRCs that would ensure that social distancing and the health, safety and security of site staff and residents could be maintained – should the travel restrictions be eased, or if directed to do so by the government,” she said.
New Forest District Council suspended its garden waste collections from homes on 30th March but announced on Tuesday that the service would resume on 27th April. Christchurch residents were told their collections would resume this week as long as staff numbers were adequate.