Annoyance at closure of Crawley’s rubbish tip

Crawley residents have asked when the town’s tip will reopen as the leader of the borough council reported a ‘big increase’ in fly-tipping.

Monday, 6th April 2020, 10:39 am

The Household Waste Recycling Site, in Metcalf Way, closed two weeks ago, with West Sussex County Council and operator Viridor citing the need to protect staff and residents when social distancing became a problem.

During an online Q&A with residents last week, Peter Lamb fielded a number of questions on the subject.

Painting a less than happy picture of the relationship between the county council and the district and borough councils, he said none had been consulted on the closures.

Crawley Household waste and recycling site, Metcalf Way. Pic Steve Robards SR1707716 SUS-170415-173028001

Mr Lamb told viewers the county council had the ability to list tip staff as key workers in the same way the refuse, recycling and garden waste teams had been, allowing those service to keep running.

Reporting a ‘big increase’ in fly-tipping and the improper dumping of dog waste, he warned residents: “That’s not acceptable. You are still eligible for fines if you are caught in the process.”

Conversely, a county council spokesman said there had been no increase in the number of reported fly-tips but the situation was being ‘monitored’.

The warning to those responsible was the same, though: “We remind residents that fly-tipping is both criminal and antisocial and those who perpetrate it risk large fines or imprisonment if convicted.”

The spokesman said that, before the government’s lockdown was introduced, some customers at the county’s tips had become ‘aggressive and abusive’ towards staff who were trying to make sure social distancing was observed.

They added: “We are looking at measures that can be taken to enable us to re-open the sites safely, but for the time being we have no choice but to keep them closed, in line with government advice.

“These are unprecedented times and we understand it is frustrating not to have access to these services.”

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