Dorset Council calls for local views on new waste management centre

Dorset Council has called for local residents to provide feedback on its plans to build a new waste management centre for Blandford in North Dorset.

Household recycling centreThe new facility will be built to the south of Sunrise Business Park, replacing the existing site at Blandford Heights Industrial Estate and will include a new household recycling centre (HRC).

Officials say the current HRC is difficult for some residents to use and has become unable to meet the demands of the services operated by the Council.

Dorset Council’s waste services team has one of the highest recycling rates of all local authorities, with a rate of 59.6 per cent in year 2018/19 according to Defra. This compares with the national average of 45.1 per cent.

Dorset Council is hoping that the new centre will improve the productivity and accessibility of its service. The current site cannot accommodate vehicles delivering waste material and sees the HRC and waste transfer barn share the same point of access, with only 14 vehicles able to fit on the premises at any one time.

The new site will separate access to the HRC and waste transfer barn and proposes a split-level HRC, which would remove the need for local residents to climb steps.

A spokesperson from Dorset Council has commented that it is not thought that the operation of the new waste management centre will negatively affect residents or businesses.

It is anticipated that work on the new centre will begin on site in summer 2021, with work predicted to be finished and the site operational by winter 2022.

Cllr Jill Haynes, Dorset Council Portfolio Holder for Customer and Community Services, said: “We’re delighted to be able to present these plans for Blandford’s new Waste Management Centre and gather feedback from residents.

“Blandford’s current facilities have needed updating for some time and I’m sure people will be interested to see what we have planned.

“It’s important that we consider the views of the people who currently use the household recycling centre, as well as local businesses and others who may be based in the area.”

Residents that would like to provide their feedback on the plans can fill out an online questionnaire, with submissions open until 18 January, or attend one of two virtual meetings scheduled for 13 January.