Fury over Seaton skip closure

Recycling centre to be axed as part of county council cost savings

PLANS to close Seaton’s recycling centre have been greeted with anger - and a warning it will lead to a big rise in fly tipping.

Devon County Council says it will shut the depot in Colyford Road at the end of this month.

It says the service, which operates on Saturdays, costs �134,000 a year to run and is being axed as part of cost savings.

A spokesman said: “It was agreed at the full council meeting in February that the council would end its rural skip service, including the skip at Seaton, at the end of March.

“The skips are a very inefficient way of disposing of waste because of the lack of separation facilities. Recycling rates for the skips are much poorer - sometimes as low as 32 percent - than the recycling rates at permanent sites which are often in excess of 75 percent.

“We are still deeply committed to encouraging waste reduction and recycling, but these skips represent a very small proportion of our overall recycling service.

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“The skips are costly and are an inefficient way of recycling. It is far more effective to have permanent sites with facilities that give greater recycling rates.”

“Seaton is within the 10 miles of Sutton Barton recycling centre between Axminster and Honiton, and within 10 miles of the recycling centre at Sidmouth.

Former Seaton Mayor Sandra Semple is amongst the skip users calling for a rethink.

She said residents now faced a 20-mile round trip, along often pot-holed back roads, to dispose of their bulky household waste, which they were not allowed to put in their bins.

She said: “For those who do not have a car - and that includes a lot of low-waged, older and disabled people - they will have nowhere at all to go.

“If you visit the depot on a Saturday you will see people with wheelbarrows, shopping trolleys, sack barrows, etc walking up to the tip to dispose of items because they do not have any other means of transporting the waste.

Not only is this not “green” and discriminatory, it will almost certainly lead to an increase in fly tipping.

“At the moment I think East Devon is on its way to becoming like an area of a third world country.”