February 11, 2011
recycling centre's opening hours to be cut from April
opening hours at Highbridge Recycling Centre are set to be reduced
as part of ongoing cost-cutting moves from the start of April,
it was announced on Friday (February 11th).
Somerset County Council is aiming to make £37 million in
cuts from its budget and has decided that around £1.9 million
in savings over two years will come from Somerset Waste Partnership
At Friday's meeting of Somerset Waste Board (SWB), which represents
all six partner councils, it was agreed that reducing opening
hours would be introduced at all the centres, including Highbridge's
Isleport Industrial Estate facilities.
April, it will close for two days a week, on Wednesdays and Thursdays,
but will be remain open from Friday to Tuesday.
It will also remain open on both Saturdays and Sundays and have
one weekday late night until 8pm in response to customer demand.
changes bring the centre's hours down from 70 in the summer and
56 in winter to 40 hours a week year round.
New charges will also be introduced at the centre from 1st April
for householders bringing hardcore and tyres. Specific figures
are yet be announced.
"We are in a very difficult financial position and although
we have to find the savings, SWB is exploring some alternative
options on how the savings can be made," said SCC and SWB
member Cllr David Hall.
"We are in detailed discussions with third parties, but cannot
say more than this at the moment as it is highly sensitive and
some factors are outside of our control. We are all working together
to try to save some or all of the centres for at least the next
The SCC budget will be set on Wednesday 16th February at a public
meeting that will debate the changes to recycling centres in response
to concern expressed by local campaigners. SWB will receive a
further report on whether any alternative options are viable on