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New recycling centre remains unused two years after it was built

25 Dec 2023 5 minute read
The New Recycling Centre In Pyle. Photo via Google

Lewis Smith, local democracy reporter

Frustrations have been expressed over the delayed opening of a £2.3 million recycling centre which remains unused two years after it was built.

The new recycling centre situated at Village Farm Industrial Estate in Pyle was first approved by the local authority in 2018, with a budget of £2.3 million set to create an improved community recycling centre to replace the current site at Tythegston.

However, while the construction of the site was completed more than two years ago, it has still remained unopened to the public with council officers saying the delay has been caused because waste management group Kier, who run waste facilities in Bridgend, have not been able to gain an operating license from Natural Resources Wales.

The new recycling site is described as having a split-level design with drivers able to follow a one-way system along with access to parking bays and recycling skips at ground level as well as bypass ramps that lead to high-sided skips on an upper level.

Once opened plans say it will be capable of accommodating up to 24 vehicles at a time, along with an additional on-site queuing capacity for another 72 vehicles.

Spring

While a council spokesperson has said they hope to be able to announce news of its opening soon with a potential date set for the spring of 2024, as of December 2023 the site is still empty with a definitive opening date not given.

Cllr Alex Williams, who is chair of the BCBC corporate overview and scrutiny committee said given the money that had been spent, he hoped it would be opened as soon as possible for residents in the area to use.

He said: “The £2.3 million investment in re-locating the community recycling centre from Tythegston to Village Farm Industrial Estate in Pyle was given the go ahead five years ago. Since then, we have been repeatedly assured that the new centre is very much still in the pipeline, two and a half years since the work was completed at the site.

“In June 2021, it was originally expected to open in late summer 2021. Then in June 2022, we heard that it was anticipated that it would open in 2022/23, with both sites being maintained until the new site was fully operational. Now 18 months later, and after many years of going back and forth between BCBC, Kier, the Welsh Government and Natural Resources Wales on issues relating to the operator’s licence and environmental permit, we are still not expecting the site to be open before Spring 2024 at the earliest.

“Given the significant £2.3m expenditure on this community recycling centre, it is imperative that the site becomes fully operational for the benefit of residents, and so that much-needed efficiency savings can be found during this troubling time of financial turbulence for the local authority where every penny counts if we are to retain essential public services.”

Overspend

It comes just months after the local authority discussed saving measures aimed at tackling an annual budget overspend of around £10 million pounds, which included plans to close each of the borough’s three recycling centres for one day a week.

When asked why there had been a delay in the operating licence being awarded earlier this year, officers at a full council meeting said a previous application had been withdrawn from operators Kier following requests from Natural Resources Wales for further information with regards to fire mitigation at the site.

They assured members that while a refreshed application had now been submitted, there was a backlog of applications with NRW, adding that the authority had also established a relationship with directors to make sure the application was given due consideration and not pushed to the back of the queue.

A council spokesman said: “The new £2.3m community recycling centre at Village Farm Industrial Estate in Pyle is complete and ready to open as soon as a licence has been granted to our waste partners Kier by Natural Resources Wales. Until we have received confirmation from Kier that this is in place, the Tythegston site will remain in use.

“Once open, the new recycling centre’s design will offer drivers a choice of accessing parking bays and recycling skips located on both the ground level and an upper deck.

“It will feature modern facilities designed to make a trip to the tip as easy and convenient as possible. These include an all-weather canopy on the higher level, flexible bollards to prevent accidental damage to vehicles, solar on-site lighting, kerb-free parking bays to enhance safety and remove potential trip hazards, and more.

“The new centre will be able to be used by up to 24 vehicles at a time while up to 72 additional vehicles queue on site. To ease congestion and further support the flow of traffic around both the recycling centre and Village Farm Industrial Estate, a dedicated turning lane has already been installed from the A48 onto Heol Mostyn along with new traffic lights and a safe crossing island.

“The new facility promises to be bigger, better and more accessible than the Tythegston site, and further plans are in place to establish a new re-use shop similar to the facility which is proving to be very popular at Maesteg community recycling centre. We hope to be in a position to confirm further details very soon.”


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1 month ago

Left hand right hand springs to mind, or it may be waiting for it to bed in with the public, what chance do the people of Wales have when our hard earned taxes are organised by a pack of lemmings loyalty following orders, will somebody step up and take control before we as a country get in to debt.

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