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Illegal Dumping at Bring Centres

Cathaoirleach and P Tighe at Blackhall bring centre

Entering into Christmas, the busiest season for creating waste in the home, Cathaoirleach Ken Glynn called on householders to manage their waste in a responsible way. He stated “we appreciate the enthusiasm of Westmeath residents to recycle at the 48 bring centres in the county. To date this year over 63 tonnes of textiles, 1,440 tonnes of glass and 56 tonnes of cans were collected”. He continued “Many people have taken the opportunity, during the lockdown period, to clear out their wardrobes, hoping to donate their unwanted clothing to charity. However, some individuals have taken items to the recycling banks and left them in bags outside/beside full recycling banks. Not only is this considered to be fly-tipping but it is most likely that the contents will be spoiled and unfit to be donated or recycled resulting in them going to landfill”.

Pat Tighe, Senior Executive Technician, Westmeath County Council, stated “there are 48 bring centres in Westmeath consisting of glass, can and textile banks. A 70-80% increase in usage was recorded during the lockdown and restrictions. To meet the demand increased servicing of the bring centres was scheduled and additional recycling receptacles units were placed on the busier sites. In addition, CCTV is deployed at various sites as there is a propensity by some to leave empty containers, recyclables, bags, clothes and household waste at the bring centres. Anyone who does leave items around the bring centres can find themselves the recipient of a €150 litter fine. Bring centres requiring servicing can be reported to either bottlebanks@westmeathcoco.ie or clothesbanks@westmeathcoco.ie or by telephone to 044 933 2166”.

At his visit to the Blackhall Bring Centre in Mullingar Cllr Glynn stated “it’s very frustrating to see items dumped without any regard for the Mullingar Recycling Resource Centre staff who manage the servicing of the network of bottle banks at the bring sites in Mullingar or for the other users of the bring centres. And it’s particularly annoying when you find electrical items which are free to recycle at the Civic Amenity Sites or stores where these items are sold such as this printer that has been dumped here today”.

Ruth Maxwell from the Council’s Environment Department stated “some bring centres do have issues with illegal dumping and it is with thanks to the vigilance and hard work of many community groups, tidy towns and residents’ associations that these issues do not get out of control. To tackle the issue, in addition to ongoing media promotions, new signage has been erected at eight bring sites with plans to extend the roll out in the coming year”.

Content Last Updated/Reviewed: 16/12/2020