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Issue - decisions

Consultation on the future of Everleigh Household Recycling Centre

22/10/2018 - Consultation on the future of Everleigh Household Recycling Centre

Councillor Bridget Wayman presented the report which provided an update to Cabinet on the results of the public consultation into the future of Everleigh Household Recycling Centre (HRC) in light of the proposal to close the site to avoid capital investment and save the operating costs of keeping this facility open.


Councillor Wayman reported that Everleigh HRC is one of a network of eleven HRC’s across Wiltshire operated under contracts with the council. The council, including the waste service, has challenging financial savings targets to achieve for 2018-19 and beyond and site survey results show that Everleigh HRC required capital investment in order to continue to remain open. The HRC has fewer users than the other sites and collects less waste and recycling as a consequence.


The Cabinet noted that a public consultation was undertaken between June and September 2018, where residents were invited to comment on a proposal to close the site and identify the implications this might have. A good response was received with a large majority in favour of retaining the HRC at Everleigh. Many of the responses referred to loss of convenience if the site was closed and expressed concern about the risk of an increase in fly tipping.


Councillor Wayman explained that the impacts of closing Everleigh HRC were not sufficient to justify the capital investment required and the loss of the opportunity for revenue savings which the service and council needed to find. Reference was made to the guidance from the Waste Resources Action Programme about the number of HRC’s that should be provided for a given number of residents and the location of these centres in relation to residential developments. It was noted that, if Everleigh HRC was closed, residents would be able to access sites at Marlborough, Devizes or Amesbury within the timescales stated in the guidelines, subject to any traffic delays.


The Leader welcomed the following residents and thanked them for their comments and questions:


·         Colin Gale, local resident representing Pewsey Community Area Partnership, Campaign to Protect Rural England and Pewsey Parish Council.

·         Curly Haskell, local resident and Chair of Pewsey Parish Council

·         Charmian Spickernell, local resident and Campaign to Protect Rural England

·         John Forder, local resident


The Leader referred to the comments in a letter received from Tidworth Town Council expressing concern about the proposed closure of the Everleigh HRC.


Councillors Jerry Kunckler, Stuart Wheeler, local members, commented on: the outstanding work undertaken and meetings attended over many months by Colin Gale on behalf of local residents and organisations in the Pewsey area; historical background of the HRC; outcomes of the consultation; the location of the site and convenience to residents; the ability of residents to travel to other sites further afield; potential for the Ministry of Defence using the site; including commercial waste in the sites waste streams; potential for mothballing the site; the impact on other council services if the site remained open; the preservation of services within financial constraints; increasing the opening times of other local sites; and recent increase in usage of the site. In addition, the contents of a letter from Councillor Paul Oatway QPM were read out at the meeting.


In response to a series of questions and comments from Councillors Jerry Kunckler, Stuart Wheeler, as detailed above, and Councillors Ian Blair-Pilling Brian Mathew, Alan Hill, Ruth Hopkinson, Toby Sturgis, Jerry Wickham and Philip Whitehead, Councillor Wayman stated: all options to retain the centre at Everleigh and undertake necessary repairs had been considered; that robust measures were being taken by the Council in tackling fly-tipping, and referred to a recent prosecution of a persistent fly-tipper who received a prison sentence for their fly-tipping activities; repairs to the HRC in Salisbury; as a consequence of demographics and the geographical positioning of towns and villages in Wiltshire, a large number of residents living in rural areas travelled longer distances to their local HRC’s; financial savings within the revenue budget; the recent increase in number of recyclable materials collected from households, therefore, potentially reducing the demand for journeys to HRC’s; and, the comments received as a result of the consultation feedback, along with the preferences of the local community. 


The Cabinet heard from Councillor Graham Wright, Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Management Committee, who: offered to include a review of the way the Council undertakes consultations and assesses the results to assist policy development in the Management Committee Forward Work Plan; and read out a letter from Councillor Sven Hocking, Chairman of the Waste Contracts Task Group.  



     i)        To note the results of the public consultation undertaken on the proposal to close Everleigh HRC

    ii)        Approves the closure of Everleigh HRC as proposed.


Reason for Decision:


1.    The proposed option generates the combination of the greatest annual revenue saving coupled with avoidance of additional in-year capital spend.


2.    Although the consultation responses show high local opposition to the proposal, the risks of not taking the proposed action are greater than those associated with closing Everleigh HRC.






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