Ten recycling centres in Herts to reopen on Monday

Stevenage Household Waste Recycling Centre. Picture: DANNY LOO

Stevenage Household Waste Recycling Centre. Picture: DANNY LOO - Credit: Archant

The phased reopening of Herts’ recycling centres will begin next week, with ten sites set to open on Monday.

Herts County Council had been drawing up plans for a phased reopening of Household Waste Recycling Centres, subject to new government guidance on social distancing.

The ten sites set to reopen are Waterdale, Letchworth, Rickmansworth, Turnford, Berkhamsted, Bishop’s Stortford, Stevenage, Harpenden, Potters Bar and Royston.

The remaining six sites in Herts will not open in the short term as they cannot currently be operated with safe social distancing. HCC are working with contractors to solve this for as many sites as possible.

Terry Hone, cabinet member for waste management, said: “Our priority is the safety of site staff, residents and the wider community, and I’m pleased that we’ve been able to plan ways to reopen most of our recycling centres while applying the critical social distancing advice that continues to be in place.

“We are asking residents to only visit an HWRC if their waste or recycling can’t be stored safely at home. By this, we mean that the waste or recycling can’t be stored without causing a risk of injury, health or harm to the resident or other members of their household.

“I would stress that we do not consider reopening some HWRCs undermines the overarching message to “stay at home”, and our main message, in accordance with government advice, is that journeys should only be made where there is no alternative.

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“Most types of waste can be put in normal kerb side bins for collection, or stored safely at home, and this is a much better option at the moment. The social distancing measures we’re putting in place to protect our staff and the public mean that visits will take a lot longer than normal and we’re expecting very long queues.”

The centres will operate on a ‘one in, one out’ basis, with a limited number of vehicles allowed within the centre at any one time. Once in the centre, visitors will be asked to follow identified pathways and queue at a safe distance to access each waste container.

All Hertfordshire’s recycling centres have been closed since March 24 as part of the government’s COVID-19 lockdown measures.

Residents are asked to keep checking the HCC website for the latest updates.