Evening Telegraph (First Edition)

Angus skips shake-up earns award

- BY GRAHAM BROWN

THE shake-up of Angus skip sites has reaped a top UK award for the local authority as recycling rates rocket.

Angus Council was named as the local authority success story award-winner in the 2020 National Recycling Awards, the only Scottish council shortliste­d in the UK scheme. The awards recognise councils which have put in place an initiative to drive significan­t success in recycling, reuse or waste prevention performanc­e while offering public value for money.

It comes three years after community protests in smaller burghs over the controvers­ial revamp.

All seven Angus skip sites were the subject of a major redesign, including a six-figure redevelopm­ent of the Forfar facility on Queenswell Road.

But the 2018 move provoked controvers­y with the removal of general waste skips from smaller centres as part of the drive to encourage recycling, rather than reducing the number of facilities.

Customers were directed to the three largest centres at Forfar, Arbroath and Montrose to dispose of general waste where there was space for a full range of recycling containers and more staff available to provide advice and direction.

The changes have seen annual recycling rates at Angus centres jump from 51% to 63% in 2019-20.

On a wider front, Angus is second out of Scotland’s 32 local authoritie­s in the household recycling league table.

The area also directs rubbish away from landfill through its agreement with the Baldovie waste-to-energy plant in Dundee.

Awards judges said: “This is a council that bucked the trend and had the strength of mind to resist the obvious solution of cutting back, instead really reshaping its service to keep it open.”

Communitie­s convener, Councillor Mark Salmond, said: “We are thrilled to win the local authority success award.

“This is a massive achievemen­t for the people of Angus who have been exceptiona­l at recycling as much as they can when visiting our centres.

“I’m also delighted staff have been recognised for transformi­ng our facilities to offer maximum recycling opportunit­ies for our residents.

“The commitment from our recycling staff at our recycling centres is inspiratio­nal.”

The MRW National Recycling Awards bring together recycling and waste management profession­als to recognise and celebrate best practice and innovation.

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