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Reduced opening hours for recycling centers in Flintshire causing ‘major problems’

North Wales > Flintshire

Sent: Thu. June 13, 2024

REDUCED opening hours for recycling centers in Flintshire are believed to be causing “major problems” as people queue for up to an hour to get into them.
To save money, earlier this year Flintshire City Council decided to reduce the number of days its five household recycling centers (HRCs) are open from seven to five.
At the beginning of May, changes began at the centers in Mold, Buckley, Oakenholt, Sandycroft and Greenfield.
This led to problems in Buckley as images shared on social media showed cars reversing in front of the HRC on Globe Way, with queues also reported in Sandycroft.
The local authority said the decision to reduce opening hours “was not taken lightly” but was necessary to reduce costs while protecting jobs.
At a meeting of backbench politicians this week, concerns were expressed about the impact of the decision.
Buckley Pentrobin councilor Mike Peers said he had been contacted by a number of residents who were frustrated by the long waits.
Speaking at a meeting of the council’s environmental and economic scrutiny committee, he said: “When it comes to closing household recycling points for two days a week, we need to review this very urgently.
“No doubt members have seen the comments on Facebook. I’ve received emails and you’ve probably seen long lines outside HRCs, with people waiting in line for 45 minutes to an hour.
“There are serious problems, so I think we need to look at it and try to resolve the situation.
“I know this was treated as a budget item and ignored, but we need to look in detail at the problems that exist at HRC.
“I would ask that this issue be added to the agenda as soon as possible so that we can provide information to our residents and voters.”
Due to changes to opening hours, the centers in Mold, Oakenholt and Sandycroft are closed on Wednesdays and Thursdays.
Meanwhile, those in Greenfield and Buckley are closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Authorities have previously said that various factors, including traffic congestion, were taken into account when changing opening hours.
An announcement on its website said: ‘In light of the budgetary situation facing Flintshire this year and expected in 2025/26, we have had to introduce significant measures to reduce costs and preserve jobs.
“Various factors were carefully taken into account when changing the opening days and hours.
“These include site utilization patterns, operational efficiency and the need to deliver HRC services within the agreed reduced available budget.”
Officials stressed that no jobs would be lost as a result of the changes and they did not expect it to have an impact on recycling levels in the district.
The council added: “There is no limit to what site you can use, so if your nearest site is closed, use the next available site.
“In the event that all facilities are closed (Wednesday), please keep materials safely at home until the next day when they can be disposed of.
“Please note that this does not apply to those with a vehicle or trailer permit.”
On Tuesday (June 11, 2024), Councilor Peers was informed that another report on this matter would be presented at a future committee meeting.

Author: Liam Randall – Local Democracy Reporter

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