Agenda item

Recycling and Household Waste Sites Consultation Outcome, Recommendations and Further Consultation.


The Committee considered a report of the Director of Environment and Transport concerning the outcome of the Recycling and Household Waste Sites (RHWS) consultation and informing of the revised proposals that would form part of a secondary consultation. The report also sought the Committee’s views as part of the secondary consultation. A copy of the report, marked ‘Agenda Item 8, is filed with these minutes.


In presenting the report, the Director highlighted that 5,638 responses had been received to the online questionnaire. The findings of the consultation showed that there was strong opposition to the proposal to close some sites, especially Market Harborough and Shepshed. However, there was less concern about a proposed reduction in the days that the Bottesford site would be open, and there was broad support to reduce summer opening hours and to close on Christmas Eve at all RHWS. Feedback from focus groups, which was more detailed and was set out in the report, broadly reflected this view. Neighbouring authorities were concerned about displacement impacts should the proposals lead to residents using RHWS outside of the county boundary. As a result of the outcome of the first consultation. a second consultation had begun on revised proposals to keep Market Harborough RHWS and Shepshed RHWS open part-time and to reduce the opening days at Kibworth RHWS. This started on 21 February and would run for four weeks.


Arising from discussion, the following points were raised:


      i.         A traffic impact assessment had been completed during the first consultation at the Kibworth RHWS, as part of the proposal to close the Market Harborough RHWS and the impact of the potential displacement of traffic to Kibworth. This showed that the junction on the A6 to the Kibworth RHWS could tolerate any potential displacement as a result of the proposal. 

     ii.         Should the Cabinet approve the proposed closure of the Somerby RHWS, Members were assured that those staff affected were being fully supported and would be offered transfer to other sites where possible.  Members were assured that officers were seeking to avoid redundancies.  There was a high level of vacancies across the service, some of which were filled by agency staff. Officers would work with colleagues in the Council’s Strategic Property Unit to ascertain the site’s future should the waste service declare it surplus to operational requirements.  This was currently not defined until the Cabinet decision was known.

    iii.         Regarding the demographic data for online questionnaire respondents compared to the general population of Leicestershire, it was suspected that the percentage of respondents aged 45-75 was higher than that shown for the county as this was reflective of the demographic of site users.  However, officers agreed to look further at the data to provide a written explanation to the Committee where additional data was available.  Additionally, members were informed that younger people usually did not engage in consultations which may have contributed to the difference in the data.


The Committee commended officers for such thorough consideration of the proposals and the feedback from residents to arrive at the proposals contained within the second consultation which they agreed were a good compromise. Members recognised the level of work that had been put in to determine the best approach for the service in light of the Council’s challenging financial position.


The Cabinet Lead Member for the Environment and the Green Agenda echoed the comments made and added that the additional funding from the Government had helped with revising the proposals and had meant that less RHWSs needed to close.




That the outcome of the Recycling and Household Waste Sites consultation and the revised proposals that would form part of a secondary consultation, be noted.



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