When is your nearest recycling and waste centre reopening?

Many councils across the region are planning to reopen recycling centres after a rise in reports of fly-tipping.

Fly-tipping during coronavirus lockdown is up 76%, according to the dumping waste app ClearWaste.

The Countryside Alliance has reported that the increase is related to a rise in households carrying out DIY jobs since the government announced lockdown measures.

The same lockdown measures have forced councils and local authorities to close 90% of the country's recycling and refuse centres.

Subsequently, there has been an increase in the number of household items being dumped and fly-tipped illegally.

A dog walker discovering large amounts of waste that was dumped on Combe Hay Lane in Bath Credit: Tony Press

The rural campaigning group says fly-tipping causes major destruction for rural communities, the environment and wildlife.

Many fly-tipping hotspots are often rural lanes and farmland.

Farmers have a legal responsibility to clear up waste that is dumped on their land, with the average clean-up operation costing them £800 a time, according to The Countryside Alliance.

The majority of centres will be opening for essential use only.

Now after calls from local authorities and communities, the government has announced the opening of several recycling and refuse centres across the country.

The majority of centres will be opening for essential use only.

Can I drive there?

Travelling to recycling and waste centres will be deemed an essential travel.

What is 'essential use'?

The government has defined essential use as 'waste that cannot be stored without causing a risk of injury, healthy or harm to the resident or other members of their household'.

Residents are urged to follow government guidance and only travel to recycling centres if the waste presents a hazard and 'cannot be legally and responsibly disposed of in other ways.'

Devon County Council is reopening 19 of its Household Waste and Recycling Centres on Monday 11 May.


Devon County Council is reopened 19 of its Household Waste and Recycling Centres on Monday 11 May.

All of the 19 centres were reopened for essential use only and operate their usual hours.

To protect the public and staff a series of health protection measures are in force at each centre, including a one-in one-out policy and the two-metre social distancing guidelines.

Not all centres are reopening on Monday 11 May, Punchbowl in Crediton will open on Friday 15 May and will only open on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays.

Punchbowl opening hours:

Fridays and Mondays - 9am to 5pmSaturdays and Sundays - 10am to 6pm

In addition, Crowndale Recycling Centre in Tavistock, will be open from Sunday 17 May, and only open on Saturdays and Sundays.

Crowndale opening hours:

Saturdays and Sundays - 10am to 6pm

Advice from Devon County Council:

  • Residents displaying coronavirus symptoms, are asked not to visit the recycling centres.

  • Only cars without trailers, with a maximum of two adults per vehicle, will be permitted on site.

  • To keep unloading times to a minimum, trailers, vans, pick-ups and commercial vehicles will not be granted access for the time being.

  • Payments on site must be by credit/debit card only

South Gloucestershire Council has announced that three Sort It recycling centres will reopen on Saturday 16 May.


Plymouth City Council reopened Chelson Meadow household waste recycling centre on Wednesday 13 May, for garden waste, electrical equipment and bagged household waste only.

Measures are in place to ensure social distancing at all times to protect customers and staff.

The number of cars allowed onto the site is restricted, with a maximum of two adults per car and strictly no children.

No vans or trailers are allowed and there is no pedestrian access to the site.

Staff will not be able to help with unloading vehicles.

Opening hours will be 8am to 6pm, seven days a week.

The following items will not be taken:

  • Antifreeze

  • Asbestos

  • Chemicals Batteries (car or household)

  • Fluorescent tubes or low energy lamps

  • Gas bottles

  • Hazardous waste

  • Plasterboard

  • Paint

  • Oil (cooking or engine)

  • Soil or hardcore


South Gloucestershire Council has announced that three Sort It recycling centres will reopen on Saturday 16 May.

Centres at Mangotsfield, Thornbury and Yate will open with some restrictions around the type of waste that can be disposed of.

There will also be social distancing measures in place to keep people safe.

There will also be a temporary change to opening times with sites operating from 6am to 6pm until further notice.

The sites will be open for essential use and will only accept non-recyclable black bin waste and large items such as furniture and mattresses.

Any other waste, including garden waste, soil, DIY, recycling and plastics will not be accepted.


The two largest sites in the county at Hempsted in Gloucester and Wingmoor Farm at Stoke Orchard re-opened for essential visits only from Monday 11th May.

All trips must be booked in advance to limit the number of people on-site.

Social distancing measures will be strictly enforced to help keep visitors and staff safe.

Visitors are asked to only bring to site what they can safely unload themselves as site staff need to social distance so will not be able to help with unloading.

Once the initial trial is completed, the council hopes to open further recycling centres across the county in the coming weeks.

It is not known when Bristol's recycling and waste centre's will reopen.


Recycling and waste centres in the city will reopen Monday 18 May.

New measures will be put in place at both the Avonmouth and St Philips sites to ensure social distancing.

The council is asking those planning to visit to only go is absolutely necessary, and residents are being urged to use the garden waste services, bulky waste collections to have furniture and white goods collected from their home, weekly recycling and fortnightly refuse collections.

In a bid to help people plan their visit and reduce waiting times, short term measures include:

  • An odd and even number plate system, which means people will only be able to visit on certain days

  • Only cars and small vans will be allowed to use the site, and all must have proof they are Bristol residents

  • People will be able to check a live stream of the queues before they leave home on the Bristol Waste website.

Mayor of Bristol Marvin Rees said: “While we are pleased to be able to reopen these sites, we want to make it clear that they will not be operating a normal service, and we would ask people to only visit if it is absolutely necessary.

“We need to remember that we are still in the middle of a global crisis, and we need to do all we can to stop the spread of the coronavirus."

Somerset Waste Partnership will reopen all 16 of its recycling centres across the county's local authority areas soon


Somerset Waste Partnership reopened 11 of its recycling centres across the county's local authority areas on Monday 11 May.

SWP manages recycling and waste services on behalf of Mendip, Sedgemoor, South Somerset, Somerset West and Taunton Council and Somerset County Council.

Following guidance from the government, its sites in Bridgwater, Chard, Dulverton, Frome, Highbridge, Street, Taunton, Wellington, Wells, Williton and Yeovil will open for essential visits only.

Collection of garden waste also restarted from Monday 11 May.

All 11 will be open six days a week:

Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays - 9am to 6pm Saturdays and Sundays - 9am to 4pm * all closed Thursdays

The other five sites are due to reopen from Tuesday 26 May.

There will be restrictions in place for materials and access. This is so social distancing measures can be maintained.

Access will be done on a 'one in, one out' basis and a number plate system will be used:

  • Odd numbers (eg ABC61) only Mondays, Wednesdays, Saturdays

  • Even numbers (eg XYZ52) only Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays

Other restrictions include:

  • Maximum two people per household

  • No people with COVID-19 symptoms, or who have been asked to shield

  • No large vans (3.5 tonne or heavier)

  • No trailers

  • Gloves to be worn outside vehicles

Only these materials will be taken:

  • Refuse usually put in your rubbish bin, and bulky items, such as furniture

  • Garden waste

  • Large electrical items, such as cookers, fridges, TVs etc

  • Hazardous chemicals, such as those from garden sheds or garages


North Somerset Council is working towards opening Weston-super-Mare recycling centre on Monday 18 May – assuming there is no change in relevant Government guidance.

Centres at Backwell or Portishead will remain closed.

Wiltshire Council is looking at ways to safely reopen Household Recycling Centres 'at some stage in the future'.


Wiltshire Council is looking at ways to safely reopen Household Recycling Centres 'at some stage in the future'.

When they do reopen, there will be 'significant changes to ensure the safety of staff and visitors', including social distancing measures.

The council has also confirmed there will most likely be a limit to the number of people and vehicles that can enter a site and the amount of material people can dispose of.

Cornwall Council has not confirmed when recycling and household waste centres will reopen.


Most waste sites closed when Britain went into lockdown at the end of March. Credit: PA Images

Cornwall's waste and recycling centres are set to reopen next Tuesday (May 19) with strict rules in place to avoid overcrowding.

The days on which residents are allowed to go to the tip depend on the year their car was registered.

For example, cars with an 09 plate will only be able to visit on an an odd date of the month, while cars with an 08 plate will only be able to dump their waste on an even day.

Cornwall Council has told residents they can only visit tips for essential use - with general rubbish and garden waste that cannot be stored safely at home.

If safety is compromised, the council warned it would close sites immediately.


Bath & North East Somerset Council have announced its recycling centre in Keynsham is to open next Wednesday [May 27].

However the local authority have said its reopening is strictly for essential use and only in cases where residents cannot safely store their waste at home.

Those who fall within these categories will be able to access the centre on a day allocated to them based on their vehicle's number plate.

The council also issued further conditions around the reopening of the centre which include:

  • The Keynsham centre will close temporarily if queues become unmanageable or staff are subjected to aggression.

  • Only four cars at a time will be allowed onto the site.

  • Residents will be permitted to visit the Keynsham site for essential visits on a day allocated to them based on their vehicle’s number plate. Full information on this can be found at https://beta.bathnes.gov.uk/keynsham-recycling-centre

  • The Keynsham centre will initially operate with extended opening hours of 8am-7.30pm Mondays to Fridays, 8am-3.45pm on Saturdays and 8am-1pm on Sundays

Residents are being urged to check the council’s social media channels and website which will display waiting time updates, before making their journey.

Signs will also be put up at the site to inform people how long their waiting time will be depending on their position in the queue.