/Coronavirus: Queues build as Manchester tips reopen

Coronavirus: Queues build as Manchester tips reopen

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PA Media

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Drivers were already queuing before opening time

Queues built up outside tips in Manchester as they reopened for the first time since lockdown.

Cars were lined up before 07:30 BST, half an hour before some recycling centres were due to open for the first time in six weeks.

Local Government Secretary Robert Jenrick has urged councils to reopen tips “as soon as possible”.

Greater Manchester is one of the first places to do so, with restrictions and social distancing measures in place.

But the region’s mayor Andy Burnham said “this is not a return to normal”, adding: “We would ask the public to limit their journeys and only travel to a household waste and recycling centre if it is absolutely essential.”

Image copyright
PA Media

Image caption

Greater Manchester is one of the first places to reopen tips

Only vehicles with number plates ending in even numbers were allowed in to a waste centre on Reliance Street, to control the number of visitors, and some people were turned away.

Centres were only accepting bagged general waste and Greater Manchester residents need to show proof of address to use the sites, which are limiting the number of cars allowed in.

Mr Jenrick previously said reopening tips in a staged manner was “sensible”.

“The longer we delay it, the longer those queues are going to be when the waste sites reopen.”

However, some councils have expressed concern over reopening sites due to the need for social distancing measures.

Fly-tipping increases

Councillor David Renard, from the Local Government Association, warned police would be required to manage “inevitable” queues.

He said permit systems and longer opening hours could be considered and reopenings would be decided locally on risk assessments.

Figures show fly-tipping has risen by 300% in rural communities since the closure of nearly all tips in March, while the number of DIY projects had increased as people were stuck at home.

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