THREE councillors are demanding to know why a tip in their ward will not reopen.

District councillors Jeremy Owenson and Andrea Morgan, as well as county councillor Paul Middlebrough, have written to Cllr Tony Miller, cabinet member responsible for the environment, asking why the Upton site has not been reopened despite nine of the county’s 11 tips being reopened in recent weeks.

In an open letter, the councillors ask for an explanation as well as assurances as to when the tip in Upton will reopen. It says: “We cannot believe that Upton Household Recycling Centre remains closed due to personnel issues.

“Of all the tips at the county disposal, this is the one that has the easiest access, with safe areas for waiting off the main road.

“Given that it is only open part time, surely it would have made sense to open more centres on a part time basis, rather than victimising the residents of Upton.

“People in the area served by this centre have made it clear in person to us, and through an online petition on social media, that it should be opened forthwith.

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“Please remember the facility has been out of action, not just because of Covid-19, but because of the flooding at the start of the year which made access impossible.

“Material is being stored and overflowing at homes which should be in the skips. Can you fully explain to our residents why there are personnel problem, what it is, and when it will be sorted?”

Last week, the reopening of the Malvern Household Recycling Centre caused major traffic issues leaving the town as residents queued up to access the site.

As a result of the congestion, Worcestershire County Council’s highways department had to open its depot to allow drivers access to the tip and to move them off the road.

Cllr Miller said:“Following the opening of 7 of the Household Recycling Centres (HRCs) in Worcestershire as of 11 May, it was important to understand how the new operating arrangements would work.

"We have continued to work with our contractor to reopen more Household Recycling Centres (HRC’s), thereby increasing the total capacity available for residents to dispose of their household waste.

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"This should assist in relieving pressure on both the sites already operational and also the highways network. To reopen more sites (beyond the initial 7) requires additional resourcing recognising the new social distancing and operating measures at each of the locations.

"We’re aware that residents in Upton have started a petition on social media in regards to the closure of the site.

"We appreciate that significant flooding in the local area, before the COVID-19 pandemic began has meant that the site there has been closed for longer than others.

"We are currently working on plans with our contractor to re-open the Upton site, and will update residents in due course."