Civic Amenity Sites

As you are probably aware, both North Luffenham and Cottesmore Civic Amenity Sites (or Tips) were closed at the start of lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Since then only the North Luffenham site has been opened under emergency measures because, though less convenient for Langham residents, it is seen to be the site that can better operate within the safety constraints of Covid-19.

We have been asked by a number of residents whether the Cottesmore site will ever open again, and so, on your behalf, representatives of LPC’s Planning Team spoke to CCllr Oliver Hemsley in his joint capacity as our County Councillor and Leader of RCC, and Ms Penny Sharp, RCC Acting Director of Places, whose remit includes Civic Amenity Sites. In response to our question as to whether there is a plan to keep Cottesmore permanently closed after the Covid-19 situation is resolved, Ms Sharp said there was not. CCllr Hemsley added that, post Covid-19, there will need to be a great deal of thinking about how a good service can continue to be provided within the financial constraints of the time. In addition he said that it is currently unclear how long the emergency measures due to Covid-19 may remain in place ranging from a few months to even a couple of years.

Ms Sharp said that the current contract for operating these sites (and other waste management roles) was expiring but, in light of Covid, permission has been given to suspend the scheduled pre-procurement process for the new contract and to consider extending the existing contract for another 4 years. Negotiations are commencing into terms of this extension with Biffa, the existing provider.

Some improvements at the North Luffenham site are planned, such as an exit gate to make the improve the traffic flow. Given the relatively high numbers of the population who are more elderly, we also suggested that consideration should be given to the inaccessibility of the bins where each requires the navigation of steep metal steps.

The Planning Team also provided CClr Hemsley and Ms Sharp with a number of suggestions to consider when eventually RCC looks to put in place a more permanent, post-Covid, waste management arrangement.

20/8/20