Thu, 09 Feb 2017
HAMPSHIRE County Council will have to pay £166,221 to enable its residents to use Newbury’s recycling facilities.
The figure was revealed following a Freedom of Information request from the Newbury Weekly News, sister paper of Newburytoday.
A total of 5,037 temporary passes have been issued to date at a cost of £33 each.
However, the council was unable to say if it had incurred any additional costs in regards to administration, printing, postage and councillors’ expenses.
North Hampshire villagers close to the county border were banned from using West Berkshire’s recycling centres in Newtown Road, Newbury, and at Padworth, after West Berkshire Council introduced a permit scheme in September 2016.
This followed Hampshire County Council’s withdrawal of a £200,000 payment to West Berkshire Council to allow its residents to use the facilities across the border.
It was also revealed, at a North Hampshire meeting last week, that the entire parish of Ashmansworth, which includes Crux Easton, has yet to receive any temporary waste permits.
Chairman of Ashmansworth Parish Council Alan Cox said:
“There was a long delay in vouchers being issued, but then we did not receive any at all – the only parish excluded,” said Mr Cox.
Despite being situated between Andover and Newbury, said Mr Cox, the majority of villagers had closer links with Newbury:
“I accept that a few of our houses are just under the 10-mile limit (and it does depend on which route is taken), but the majority of our 83 houses are over 10 miles away by road, some over 12 miles.
“There is a feeling that, in our remote area, we do not benefit from many services, and this one has now been taken away from us.”
While he understood councils were under pressure to make financial savings, Mr Cox said the efforts to save money were costing the taxpayer more in administrative costs.