Mass Protest on Wild Wet Friday against Closure of Llangadog Recycling Centre
When a crowd of over seventy people protest in the open on a soaking, windy Friday afternoon you know the issue is serious. The issue is Carmarthenshire County Council’s intention to end its contract with the recycling centre run by All Waste Services (AWS) at Llangadog. As well as giving a public service, the recycling centre provides about 10 local jobs.
The council claims it cannot afford to renew the contract, which is for the Llangadog site to provide a centre where residents can bring almost all types of rubbish. Between 80% and 85% of that rubbish is recycled, but in contrast, the average recycling rate in Carmarthenshire is only about 53%.
The Llangadog centre is the most efficient in the county, and the only one not operated by CWM Environmental, a company which the county council owns. Closure would force residents to make round trips 25 to 40 miles longer, if they opted for the nearest sites near Ammanford or at Nantycaws, Carmarthen.
The protest, attended by children from Llangadog School, parents, environmentalists and others who regard recycling as an essential public service, was accompanied by three police officers.
Llangadog’s county councillor Andrew James told the demonstration that the centre served 20,000 people, and that closure was opposed by many including the Brecon Beacons National Park Authority. Fly tipping would result, with consequential damage to wildlife and the environment, he said.
Theresa Haine, who with Christiana Heidler organised the protest, and who was recently honoured by the Madagascan government for her charity work, said to general approval that cutting just one senior officer post at the county council would make a big contribution to keeping the centre open.