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Tips to implement odd and even number plate restrictions

Eleven of Somerset's 16 recycling centres will reopen on Monday, but with restrictions on what will be accepted.

Bosses will only allow 'essential waste', which shouldn't be stored at home, to be left and vehicles with even number plates on some days and odd numbers on others.

Dorset Council says its sites will reopen from Monday, a day after Devon County Council announced the same thing.


Eleven of Somerset’s 16 recycling centres will reopen on Monday (11 May), but for essential visits only - in line with updated Government guidance. Garden Waste collections are also set to resume on Monday, both services having been suspended by Somerset Waste Partnership (SWP) in response to the Coronavirus crisis. To ensure social distancing and to protect public and staff, there will be restrictions on numbers coming into the recycling sites and the range of materials sites will accept. And SWP is warning would-be visitors to expect big queues and long waits as access is limited to ‘one in, one out’ and the number of unloading bays is reduced. Measures to control traffic will be in place. The recycling sites opening on 11 May are: Bridgwater (Saltlands) Chard, Dulverton, Frome, Highbridge, Priorswood (Taunton), Street, Wellington (Poole), Wells (Dulcote), Williton and Yeovil. For more details www.somersetwaste.gov.uk
Initially, the sites will operate temporary additional opening hours of:

·         Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday: 9am to 6pm

·         Thursday: All closed

·         Saturday and Sunday: 9am to 4pm

An odd and even vehicle number plate system will be used to control numbers. You can only visit on certain days depending on your number plate:

·     Odd numbers on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday

·     Even numbers on Tuesday, Friday and Sunday

·     All 11 sites will be closed on Thursdays

Other restrictions include:

·     A maximum of two people per household will be permitted

·     Gloves to be worn while outside vehicles

·     No trailers or large vans (3.5 tonne or heavier) will have access


Dorset Council has announced that 9 of its 10 household recycling centres are set to open on Monday 11 May now that central government guidance on managing HRCs in England during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has been updated. However, the government guidance puts strong restrictions on use to help reduce non-essential journeys.  Householders should only take waste to a HRC if it cannot be stored safely at home and no alternative disposal options are available. Visitors should also expect long queues to access HRCs due to social distancing measures limiting the amount of people we can have on site at any one time. Whilst most sites will re-open on Monday 11 May, there will be restrictions on site, and additional security staff will help to enforce these, plus traffic management measures. All usual waste types will be accepted, although re-use areas will remain closed. Most recycling centres will be open from 9am to 6pm daily, except Sherborne HRC which will remain closed due to highway safety concerns. More planning is required to prevent queuing Sherborne HRC traffic disrupting bin collections by obstructing vehicles on the access roads. We hope to resolve this issue soon, but in the meantime residents in the Sherborne area are advised to use their nearest alternative HRC, either in Shaftesbury, Blandford or Dorchester. To help reduce the need to travel to HRCs, householders should continue to maximise the use of their kerbside waste and recycling collection services.  You can always put out additional recycling, glass and food waste at the kerbside provided it is separated properly and placed in sturdy containers that can be lifted by one person. Someone will be in place at the entrance to each site to speak with visitors and advise on waiting times and procedures on site. If a queue becomes too long, some vehicles may be turned away and asked to return later. Traffic management plans will be in place to help reduce disruption on the local highways as much as possible. For more details click here


Devon County Council is reopening its recycling centres for essential use only from Monday 11 May. The government has defined ‘essential use’ as waste that ‘cannot be stored without causing a risk of injury, health 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.’ It is the first stage of what will be a phased reopening for Devon’s 19 Household Waste Recycling Centres and is subject to any subsequent government announcements. To protect the public and staff a series of health protection measures will be in force at each centre, including a one-in one-out policy and the two-metre social distancing guidelines. Unfortunately, this means for the time being site staff will not be able to assist with unloading waste. These measures are likely to cause significant delays and queues and residents are advised to postpone their visit where possible. Most recycling centres will open Monday May 11 and operate their usual opening hours. For more details click here

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