Calderdale fails Kerbside Recycling

Thursday, October 23, 2003

With rubbish overflowing, un collected Kerbside Recycling boxes are on view all over town

This week the Audit Commission has criticised Calderdale Council for its waste management services. The amount of rubbish being produced by households in the area is increasing at a rate faster than both the regional and national averages.

In this context one might expect support for eco friendly schemes such as kerbside recycling but boxes full of paper and bottles remain unemptied on the streets of Hebden Bridge as the Kerbside Recyclers stopped its operations on Monday. The not for profit service, which began in 1997, was forced to close because it needed 36,000 to continue its operations.

Calderdale Council and their refuse contractors Focsa have used Kerbside to help meet government and council recycling targets. Last year Calderdale recycled almost 10 percent of waste collected, but by 2005/6 will have to increase this to 18 percent.

Part of the financial difficulties being faced by Kerbside is that the organisation is still waiting to be paid 11,000 by Focsa for work done since August 4, 2003. A county court summons for this money was issued to Focsa last week by management committee member Councillor Les Siddall.

Kerbside Recyclers has provided much needed jobs for people with learning difficulties. 50% of its workers have learning disabilities, have enjoyed their jobs and are likely to have difficulty in finding others.

Hebden Bridge Web contacted the Council and Focsa today. Miss Ellison in the Cleansing section said that the closure of the service was, "Nothing to do with the Council," and advised residents to take their paper, glass and other recyclables to their nearest recycling point by car. An employee of Focsa said that she was unable to comment on the issue and similarly advised people to "do their own recycling using their cars."

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