Council sets out plans for Recycling Centre re-opening

7 May 2020

Cheshire West and Chester Council will re-open Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRCs) following a change in Government guidance.

On Tuesday 12 May the HWRCs in Northwich, Neston, Winsford, Chester and Ellesmere Port will reopen.  The smaller HWRC in Frodsham will open on Friday 15 May.  This is because the location of the Frodsham sites requires traffic management to be put into place to manage queues safely before it can be reopened.

Due to its size and proximity to the highway Tattenhall HWRC will remain closed until further notice as it is not possible to implement social distancing guidelines and to manage expected queues on nearby roads.

The centres will initially be open seven days a week, from 8am to 8pm Monday to Friday, and on Saturday and Sunday between 8am and 6pm to accommodate the expected additional demand. Opening times will be subject to review.  This has extended the usual hours of opening for the Neston, Northwich and Frodsham sites.  The Council has also decided against restricting access based on prior appointment and specific number plates. 

All HWRC facilities were previously closed as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, and the regulations which limited travel from the home. The Government has now clarified the position and enabled travel to a HWRC to take place if storing waste  at home is a risk to health and safety.  

Councillor Karen Shore, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environment, Highways and Strategic Transport said: “I’m sure many residents will welcome the news that some of our HWRC facilities are now able to reopen.  

“Please can we ask people to consider how essential their trip is before setting off, and only visit if absolutely necessary.  The sites will be open seven days a week and if everyone rushes there on the first few days it could cause very large queues. 

"Restrictions and traffic management will be in place when the sites reopen and it’s likely that queues will be much longer than usual.

"Please bear with us if there are delays and follow any instructions given by our staff or signage, so we can ensure everyone’s safety. Safety has been and remains a key priority in the decision to re-open and operate the HWRCs.

“I would like to thank residents for their patience whilst our HWRCs have been closed.”

Only cars will be allowed access to the sites once they reopen - no pedestrians, vans, trailers or commercial vehicles are permitted.

Visitors to HWRCs will need to follow strict two metre social distancing from staff and other site users.  Staff cannot help unload due to social distancing, so visitors must be able to safely unload their own vehicles and place items in skips.

Each site will be able to accept a smaller number of vehicles than usual at any one time, this will vary from site to site depending on its size.  This does mean fewer visitors will be able to access the sites each day.  These measures are essential to keep residents safe.

The arrangements will be reviewed after two weeks.  

The Council is also planning for the re-establishment of green waste collection, after it was paused to enable staff and vehicles to be redeployed to enable other refuse collections to be sustained safety.  More information will follow once a timetable for re-introduction can be safely established.

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