Devon County Council is reopening its recycling centres for essential use only from Monday 11 May.

The government has defined ‘essential use’ as waste that ‘cannot be stored without causing a risk of injury, health or harm to the resident or other members of their household.’

Residents are urged to follow government guidance and only travel to recycling centres if the waste presents a hazard and ‘cannot be legally and responsibly disposed of in other ways.’

It is the first stage of what will be a phased reopening for Devon’s 19 Household Waste Recycling Centres, and is subject to any subsequent government announcements.

To protect the public and staff a series of health protection measures will be in force at each centre, including a one-in one-out policy and the two-metre social distancing guidelines.

Unfortunately, this means for the time being site staff will not be able to assist with unloading waste.

These measures are likely to cause significant delays and queues and residents are advised to postpone their visit where possible.

East Devon recycling centres will operate their usual opening hours.

In addition:

  • Residents displaying coronavirus symptoms, are asked not to visit the recycling centres.
  • Only cars without trailers, with a maximum of two adults per vehicle, will be permitted on site.
  • To keep unloading times to a minimum, trailers, vans, pick-ups and commercial vehicles will not be granted access for the time being.
  • Payments on site must be by credit/debit card only

Councillor Andrea Davis, Devon County Council’s Cabinet Member for Infrastructure, Development and Waste, said; “We understand that storing some waste for long periods may not be safe and that is why, following updated government guidance, we are reopening our recycling centres for essential use only.

“The safety of the public and staff is our top priority and lengthy waiting times should be expected due to the new restrictions in place.

“We ask you to avoid queuing on the Public Highway and if it is very busy to come back later. And please, only use the facilities if it is essential and waste cannot be stored safely at home. We are working to restore normal service as soon as it is safe to do so.
“We appreciate your patience at this time.”

Editors notes

Residents are required to continue using their household kerbside recycling and general waste collections.
Items such as paper, cans, plastic bottles/packaging and glass bottles/jars will temporarily not be accepted at the Recycling Centres.
Please also keep unwanted clothing and shoes at home until charity shops and textile recycling services are able to resume donations.
For information on what can be recycled at home, please visit https://www.recycledevon.org/recycling-collections.
Recycling Centres will be open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm and weekends from 10am to 6pm.