Recycling stories

Posted in: Comment, News and Updates

I wrote the other week about my local council's Catch 22 recycling centre policy.  Those familiar with the book will remember Major Major who could not be consulted when he was in the office, but only when he wasn't.  He'd leap out of the window if someone wanted to see him when he was actually there.  It was a strategy that worked well for him until it didn't.

The same applied to my council's postcode entry policy for its recycling centres which has now been abandoned thanks to public (and perhaps police) feedback about the excess queues it led to (a two-hour wait at many times, it's reported).  Given that they never tried to enforce the postcode part of the policy, that was an outcome waiting to happen.  It's been replaced by a slot booking system (think supermarket home deliveries, National Trust car parks, and doctors' appointments).  From last week, you're only able to go if you can book a 15 minute slot.

My concerns were: [i] that there would not be enough slots (think supermarket home deliveries, National Trust car parks, and doctors' appointments); and [ii] that people might turn up anyway and be bloody minded.  Either way, my policy was to try not to go.  However, a lot of uncompostable evergreen garden waste (and a full green bin) meant that go I did, though it took me quite a few attempts to get a slot.  And when I managed it, there were only 2 15-minute slots available for the coming 7 days.  Whether that's evidence of a functional policy is hard to say, although there were no queues or aggravation.

What is clear, however, is that once you're there, it's a safer and less frenetic experience than before.  Maybe this will survive the virus, unless more fly-tipping is the main outcome of it all.

Posted in: Comment, News and Updates


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