THE opening hours of a household waste recycling centre are to be changed in a bid to boost efficiency.
The centre in Burn Road, Hartlepool, is currently open to the public seven days a week from 8am-7.30pm from April until October, and then from 8am-6pm from November until March).
From March 1, it will continue to open at 8am but the closing times will be brought forward to 5.30pm throughout the summer until October, and then 4.30pm until next March.
The centre is operated by locally-based J and B Recycling on behalf of Hartlepool Borough Council.
Fiona Srogi, the Council’s Waste Management Team leader, said: “The site has been closely monitored to identify periods of high and low usage and this has shown that from 4pm to closing time the number of visitors reduces significantly.
“As a result, we often have a situation where members of staff are required to be on duty even though the site is very quiet.
“By consolidating the opening hours in the way that is proposed, more staff will be available during the busiest times of the day to help members of the public and maximise the amount of waste that is recycled.”
Council officials say usage has fallen since the launch of a clampdown on traders who often try to use the site to avoid paying tipping fees waste at authorised treatment facilities.
They also say that the current economic downturn has resulted in fewer residents disposing of their household waste at the site.