Sudbury’s recycling centre needs to be moved to a larger site north of the town to cope with demand, according to a county council candidate.
Luke Cresswell believes the current site in Sandy Lane falls far short of the town’s requirements.
The 25-year-old, who is running as a Labour councillor for Sudbury central in the Suffolk County Council elections and also Sudbury’s north ward on the town council, wants to see it relocated.
He said: “As a party, we want to move the facility to the north of the town to one of the industrial estates, ideally near the Royal Mail sorting office, where there would be better access and space for a facility that would allow us to really be a green county.”
Mr Cresswell said the Sandy Lane centre, which recycled nearly 5,305 tonnes of material last year, had been adequate when it was built in the 1970s but can no longer cope with Sudbury’s expanding population and, due to its location, served Essex residents better than those in the town and Suffolk.
“Anybody who has tried to recycle something there knows you can queue up for hours and it can be a horrible experience,” he said. “I think it puts people off. I wouldn’t say it encourages people to fly-tip but it doesn’t help the situation or encourage people to do the right thing.”
Lisa Chambers, Suffolk County Council’s cabinet member for environment and property management, said the authority shared the concerns of the Sandy Lane Action Group and was working alongside it to alleviate problems.
Mrs Chambers said: “This includes cutting back trees, installing new signs and traffic calming measures. We are also about to realign the fencing at the site to give customers more space to manoeuvre when visiting.
“We are investigating options to relocate the site. We estimate that it would cost approximately £1.5million to £2.5million, depending on land costs.”
Mrs Chambers said customer waiting times were being kept to a minimum.
“We monitor this through CCTV and regular staff visits,” she said. “Often delays occur when sites are closed for the containers to be emptied.
“To prevent delays at the Sudbury site, this now only happens out of hours.”