People wasting time queuing for "disastrous" recycling centre

Oh dear: Teething problems are causing long queues

Oh dear: Teething problems are causing long queues

First published in News by

Users of a newly renovated recycling centre think it is a load of rubbish.

Complaints flurried in after people using the Townmead Road reuse and recycling centre, which re-opened on Monday, April 14, were waiting in a queue of traffic for up to 45 minutes.

The five-week transformation saw a new road installed for commercial vehicles, segregated walkways and relocation of the weighbridge.

Douglas Orchard, a former mayor of the borough, who used the centre this week, said the newly renovated depot was a disaster.

He likened a member of staff who instructed vehicles to reverse to the verger in TV comedy series Dad’s Army.

The 71-year-old, who will stand as a Ukip councillor in the forthcoming borough elections, said a visit that would usually take 10 minutes took an hour.

He said: “It is an absolute disaster.

“When I went in the tailback was all the way down to Mortlake Road and when I came out I couldn’t see the end of it.

“It is a huge expense and absolute nonsense and a waste of taxpayers’ money. It is not user friendly at all.”

Richmond Council’s customer service department confirmed on Twitter the queues for the centre were 45 minutes on its first day of opening, Monday, April 14, and on the following day.

Visitors to the centre were, at times, waiting in 40-minute queues on Wednesday, April 16.

Councillor Pamela Fleming, cabinet member for environment, said: “It is very early days to start making judgements on the new Townmead and I think we need to see how it works.

“Of course there are going to be queues on the first day, having been closed for a long time.

“It is now safer and better designed and will promote recycling in the area.”

Comments (10)

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9:07am Fri 18 Apr 14

jeremyhm says...

On the contrary - I went on Thursday about 3.30 - straight in, deposited garden rubbish, straight out again, all within 10 minutes. Contrast with a visit to SpaceWaye in Hounslow three weeks ago - nightmare queue, very tight parking and having to climb metal steps with heavy bins. Townmead for ever!
On the contrary - I went on Thursday about 3.30 - straight in, deposited garden rubbish, straight out again, all within 10 minutes. Contrast with a visit to SpaceWaye in Hounslow three weeks ago - nightmare queue, very tight parking and having to climb metal steps with heavy bins. Townmead for ever! jeremyhm
  • Score: 10

1:43pm Fri 18 Apr 14

salcommmentator says...

I am surprised at this article. It seems to me to be very unfair on any service of this sort to judge the effectiveness of the recent changes on how the site works in the first few days after reopening. The site was closed at a very busy time of year, when many households clear gardens for planting and houses of excess after spring-cleaning. If everyone rushes like sheep to take their waste to Townmead immediately it reopens then they are bound to cause queues and delays. Be patient, give things a chance to settle down and people a chance to get used to the new arrangements and THEN make a judgement. This sort of sensationalist and unthinking journalism doesn't do anyone any favours. Like the first person to comment I think we are very fortunate to have Townmead's facilities rather than what some other boroughs provide..
I am surprised at this article. It seems to me to be very unfair on any service of this sort to judge the effectiveness of the recent changes on how the site works in the first few days after reopening. The site was closed at a very busy time of year, when many households clear gardens for planting and houses of excess after spring-cleaning. If everyone rushes like sheep to take their waste to Townmead immediately it reopens then they are bound to cause queues and delays. Be patient, give things a chance to settle down and people a chance to get used to the new arrangements and THEN make a judgement. This sort of sensationalist and unthinking journalism doesn't do anyone any favours. Like the first person to comment I think we are very fortunate to have Townmead's facilities rather than what some other boroughs provide.. salcommmentator
  • Score: 12

10:24am Sat 19 Apr 14

Concerned_Resident says...

"I'm so furious that I've had to wait ages! Oh by the way, did I tell you I'm a UKIP candidate?"

One wonders what the real story here is... The fact that Douglas Orchard is a former Conservative Cabinet Member who operated under Anthony Arbour's direction seems like a worthy candidate.

It's just the same old faces on the same boring merry go round.

I wonder how many Liberals would defect if there was a kind of neo leftist party on the campaign trail at the moment?
"I'm so furious that I've had to wait ages! Oh by the way, did I tell you I'm a UKIP candidate?" One wonders what the real story here is... The fact that Douglas Orchard is a former Conservative Cabinet Member who operated under Anthony Arbour's direction seems like a worthy candidate. It's just the same old faces on the same boring merry go round. I wonder how many Liberals would defect if there was a kind of neo leftist party on the campaign trail at the moment? Concerned_Resident
  • Score: 9

9:41am Sun 20 Apr 14

Ms H Jackson says...

Don't know who all these people are who found it so efficient. We went on Wednesday and it is hopeless. The new design takes no account of usage patterns by residents. There are now two residents Zones 1 and 2 for different types of waste, bisected by the trade road. This inevitably leads to congestion as residents have to cross zones to dispose of all their items, particularly now the green waste is in Zone 2. Also residents now have to walk between skips in both zones to deposit their waste. This takes longer than driving round the perimeter depositing it as you go, which we used to do. Jeremyhm may be happy with lifting his garden waste up and over into a skip but I am a small lady and find it difficult. It was much easier to pull it out of my car boot and tip it onto the pile on the ground. Plus the idea that the public will presort all their waste into bags in the right sequence to deposit into the relevant skips in the relevant Zone is a non starter. If you make it too difficult and time consuming you will get more dumping. I am speaking as a Tory supporter when I say I find this new arrangement about as user friendly as the equally ill conceived redesign of Richmond station forecourt. Looks like the Council just want to take the money and a drawing board scheme is then forced onto local residents without taking into account our usage patterns. I am getting very disappointed with the Tories over this sort of thing.
Don't know who all these people are who found it so efficient. We went on Wednesday and it is hopeless. The new design takes no account of usage patterns by residents. There are now two residents Zones 1 and 2 for different types of waste, bisected by the trade road. This inevitably leads to congestion as residents have to cross zones to dispose of all their items, particularly now the green waste is in Zone 2. Also residents now have to walk between skips in both zones to deposit their waste. This takes longer than driving round the perimeter depositing it as you go, which we used to do. Jeremyhm may be happy with lifting his garden waste up and over into a skip but I am a small lady and find it difficult. It was much easier to pull it out of my car boot and tip it onto the pile on the ground. Plus the idea that the public will presort all their waste into bags in the right sequence to deposit into the relevant skips in the relevant Zone is a non starter. If you make it too difficult and time consuming you will get more dumping. I am speaking as a Tory supporter when I say I find this new arrangement about as user friendly as the equally ill conceived redesign of Richmond station forecourt. Looks like the Council just want to take the money and a drawing board scheme is then forced onto local residents without taking into account our usage patterns. I am getting very disappointed with the Tories over this sort of thing. Ms H Jackson
  • Score: -8

11:34am Sun 20 Apr 14

ChrisSquire says...

I agree with Ms H Jackson: I visited on Thursday morning and found the new setup much more arduous and confusing to use, particularly lifting the bins as I am not as strong as it used to be. It has clearly been designed to cut costs by requiring fewer staff by putting more of the labour onto residents without, of course, asking residents if that is what they wanted.

The borough has 1000s of elderly residents like me who do their own gardening and produce immense quantities of green waste. The capacity of the new setup to receive this waste is much less than the old, which will create, as we have seen already, long queues back onto the South Circular holding up the the traffic. How long before there is an accident? At least we’ll know whom to blame.

Note that you can post a review of the site onto the Google map which you can access from
http:// www.richmond.gov.uk/

townmead_road
I agree with Ms H Jackson: I visited on Thursday morning and found the new setup much more arduous and confusing to use, particularly lifting the bins as I am not as strong as it used to be. It has clearly been designed to cut costs by requiring fewer staff by putting more of the labour onto residents without, of course, asking residents if that is what they wanted. The borough has 1000s of elderly residents like me who do their own gardening and produce immense quantities of green waste. The capacity of the new setup to receive this waste is much less than the old, which will create, as we have seen already, long queues back onto the South Circular holding up the the traffic. How long before there is an accident? At least we’ll know whom to blame. Note that you can post a review of the site onto the Google map which you can access from http:// www.richmond.gov.uk/ townmead_road ChrisSquire
  • Score: -7

2:49pm Sun 20 Apr 14

jeremyhm says...

In reply to Ms Jackson: my wife who is 5ft 2in was helping me, and had no trouble at all tipping green waste into the bin provided. Has Mr Squire got a green waste wheelie bin from the Council (I have just done this - it is enormous and will be collected every fortnight)? This might help with his problem.
I say again - try SpaceWaye in Hounslow before you complain about the new Townmead, and see how lucky we are.
In reply to Ms Jackson: my wife who is 5ft 2in was helping me, and had no trouble at all tipping green waste into the bin provided. Has Mr Squire got a green waste wheelie bin from the Council (I have just done this - it is enormous and will be collected every fortnight)? This might help with his problem. I say again - try SpaceWaye in Hounslow before you complain about the new Townmead, and see how lucky we are. jeremyhm
  • Score: 7

2:55pm Sun 20 Apr 14

Concerned_Resident says...

I couldn't agree more about Space Waye. Traipsing up and down those metal steps to overlook a giant skip is the biggest pain, especially if you have anything heavy or it is wet (they get very slippery).

The tip in Spelthorne is excellent. You have hatches in the wall of a big building that you can throw things into, which falls down into a giant sorting area. When I last went there, I was impressed by the convenience and the number of staff on hand to assist. Let's hope it's still the same now!
I couldn't agree more about Space Waye. Traipsing up and down those metal steps to overlook a giant skip is the biggest pain, especially if you have anything heavy or it is wet (they get very slippery). The tip in Spelthorne is excellent. You have hatches in the wall of a big building that you can throw things into, which falls down into a giant sorting area. When I last went there, I was impressed by the convenience and the number of staff on hand to assist. Let's hope it's still the same now! Concerned_Resident
  • Score: -1

10:55am Mon 21 Apr 14

ChrisSquire says...

I thank Jeremyhm for this helpful suggestion. The 'garden recycling scheme' costs £50 a year for fortnightly collections plus £25 to buy a bin.
http:/ / www.richmond.gov.
uk/ home/ services/
rubbish_and_recyclin
g/
garden_recycling/
garden_bins.htm
I thank Jeremyhm for this helpful suggestion. The 'garden recycling scheme' costs £50 a year for fortnightly collections plus £25 to buy a bin. http:/ / www.richmond.gov. uk/ home/ services/ rubbish_and_recyclin g/ garden_recycling/ garden_bins.htm ChrisSquire
  • Score: -3

11:06am Tue 22 Apr 14

Sparkythecat says...

Don't let's forget that Mr Squires will criticise anything the Tory council do and heap unwarranted praise on the Lib Dems at every opportunity..
Don't let's forget that Mr Squires will criticise anything the Tory council do and heap unwarranted praise on the Lib Dems at every opportunity.. Sparkythecat
  • Score: 8

1:51pm Thu 24 Apr 14

Sophrosyne says...

How on earth did this become a political issue? Yes it was nice before and we got used to dropping things on the ground but the redesign was required so that the facility met new safety standards.

Politicians won't want to upset voters before an election if they could avoid it!
How on earth did this become a political issue? Yes it was nice before and we got used to dropping things on the ground but the redesign was required so that the facility met new safety standards. Politicians won't want to upset voters before an election if they could avoid it! Sophrosyne
  • Score: 1

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