Residents of Barnard Castle and the surrounding area in County Durham have been without a local household waste recycling centre (HWRC) since April last year, when the small and cramped former site was closed to undergo an overhaul.
But on Monday 11th March a brand new HWRC was opened by Councillor John Lethbridge, chairman of Durham County Council, the authority responsible for 12 HWRCs across the county. All of the county’s HWRCs are managed and operated on behalf of the council under a long-term contract by HW Martin Waste Ltd.
The new £3 million HWRC is a much larger facility, built on land adjacent to the old site. The bigger footprint enabled designers to incorporate a range of improvements and additions to the service. Oliver Sherratt, Head of Environment at the county council and also in attendance at the opening, said, “I know the people of Teesdale are passionate about recycling and we are delighted to welcome them into this new and more customer-friendly facility.”
The new Stainton Grove HWRC has been built as a “split level” site, which means the public park and deposit their waste and recyclable materials on the upper level with ease and greater safety, while the containers and lorry movements remain on a separate lower level.
The facility includes a shop where good quality reusable items that have been brought to the HWRC can be bought. Reusing unwanted items is an even more environmentally friendly solution than recycling, so HW Martin and Durham County Council are keen to see the shop grow in popularity among visitors to the site.
Another innovation is the provision of an area of the site given over to trade waste inputs. This means that as well as residents, local businesses have a site where they can deposit their waste and recyclable materials. It is a “pay as you throw” system for traders, with the income generated being used to pay for the transport and disposal costs of the extra material it will generate.
The trade waste facility will provide an affordable and fully regulated option for local businesses. Not only will this increase the HWRCs recycling performance it is envisaged that incidents of fly-tipping will reduce, bringing further environmental and cost savings for the county.
HW Martin will operate the new Stainton Grove HWRC between 9:30am and 3:30pm for the rest of March, with the spring/summer opening hours of 9am to 6pm beginning in April. The HWRC will be open 7 days a week all year round (except Christmas Day and Boxing Day).
HW Martin Waste Ltd operates HWRCs across the UK, both large and small, and has significant experience of introducing innovations including reuse shops and trade waste facilities. Adam Smith, Operations Manager for HW Martin Waste, commented: “The new Stainton Grove HWRC is an impressive facility, packed with benefits for local residents and businesses. Coupled with our management of the site it will undoubtedly increase reuse and recycling performance. We are thrilled to be involved.”