Household Recycling update 01.04.21

Dear Councillors


An update for you all on the current arrangements at the Household Recycling Centres (HRCs) as we approach the Easter Bank Holiday weekend.


Easter is typically a busy time at the Household Recycling Centres, especially when this coincides with good weather, and this year is the first Easter we have operated the sites with COVID measures in place which significantly reduces available capacity. Last year the sites were temporarily closed over Easter as we were in the first full lockdown and everyone was urged to stay at home to avoid spreading coronavirus.  To help manage the anticipated high demand residents are being asked to sort materials in advance to make visits quicker and abide by the one booking per week limit.


From 1st April to 30th September all sites will be operating for the longer summer opening hours.  Please note that March, Milton and Whittlesey sites will operate Sunday opening hours on Good Friday (2 April) and Easter Monday (5 April). Site opening hours are published here.


We are continuing to maintain two metre social distancing at all sites and the booking system for all users remains in place at Alconbury, Bluntisham, Milton, St Neots and Thriplow sites (Booking system for Household Recycling Centres – Cambridgeshire County Council) The booking system for vehicles requiring e-permits remains in place at all sites. We have been monitoring the time residents actually spend on sites, where possible (and it is safe to do so) we have increased capacity for bookings by adding extra booking slots for each 15 minute period at Alconbury, Bluntisham, Milton, St Neots and Thriplow sites.  Temporary yellow signage remains in place at Alconbury, Bluntisham, Milton, St Neots, Thriplow and Witchford with information advising of the booking system, where required, and requesting residents do not queue on the public highways outside the sites.


There are still approximately 1,100 residents every week who book a slot and then do not use or cancel their booking and 300 to 400 who arrive without making a booking. As the number without bookings is lower than the unused bookings site staff continue to apply a light touch with enforcement.  Information has been added to the booking confirmation e-mail requesting residents cancel bookings if they will not be used to allow the slot to be utilised by someone else.


We have been informed by the highways scheme manager for the works at Lancaster Way (on the approach to the Witchford HRC site) that the plan is to have the traffic light controls removed for the four day Bank Holiday weekend, however this will depend on the laying of asphalt on Thursday going according to plan to ensure the road surface is fit for traffic.


The communications team have been helping us to remind residents that we have reduced capacity, to make a booking where this is required and of the changes to opening hours.  We continue to request that bookings are limited to one per household each week to allow fair access to all.


Further details are available on the HRC webpages Household Recycling Centres – Cambridgeshire County Council.


If you have any questions, please let me know by return.





Kind regards


Adam Smith
Group Manager, Waste Management
Place and Economy
Cambridgeshire County Council, SH1213, Shire Hall, Castle Hill, Cambridge, CB3 OAP
Tel:   01223 727977

Mob: 07796 948 332