Removal of Sidmouth recycling bank sends ‘wrong message’, says resident

The recycling bins which have now been removed.

The recycling bins which have now been removed. - Credit: Archant

A decision to remove recycling bins from a town centre car park has been slammed by concerned residents who say it sends the ‘wrong message’.

The bins in the Ham car park were taken away at the end of February after resurfacing works.

When approached by the Herald, an East Devon District Council (EDDC) spokeswoman said the removal was a trial and they in fact had plans, already in place, to get rid of their recycling ‘bring banks’ elsewhere.

After discovering the bins had disappeared 67-year-old Frank Ward, of Newton Poppleford, contacted the Herald.

He said: “I have been here 11 years and there have always been recycling bins on the Ham car park but they disappeared and I don’t know why.

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“With all the changes to our recycling you would think they would be encouraging it.

“I doesn’t look as if someone will be bringing them back which is surprising. It sends the wrong message”

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Steve Clarke, of The Rendezvous in Fore Street, added: “They were very popular. Often they were filled to the brim. What about people coming on holiday, where do they put their stuff? It’s going to end up in the waste bins, so it’s a false economy.”

An EDDC spokeswoman said a report about the bins would go in front of its Recycling and Waste Board in June.

She added: “We welcome any customer feedback on the removal of the bring banks at the Ham in Sidmouth, which is currently being trialled.”

She said recyclable materials were now being collected from the kerbside, meaning residents could now put all their bring bank items in either recycling sacks or recycling boxes to be collected weekly, which was ‘a much better service’.

The spokeswoman added: “It is not logical for us to continue with this additional cost but rather than just discontinue the service we are trialling it to see if there are any issues.”

She said it was illegal for businesses to use bank facilities before adding that the move was not expected to save the authority any money - as the resources would be allocated elsewhere for new housing developments.

EDDC bosses say they are pleased that the general recycling rate in the district has increased from 46 per cent to 57 per cent since the new scheme was introduced last year.

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