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End to Somerset recycling site charges for some DIY waste starts on January 1st

highbridge recycling centre

Burnham-On-Sea and Highbridge residents will soon be able to dispose of some DIY waste free of charge at Somerset recycling sites – but they will need to book ahead.

Following a recent change of legislation, from 1st January 2024, current charges for disposing of construction and demolition materials including: asbestos, plasterboard, hardcore and rubble from household DIY projects will be removed.

Each calendar month every household will be able to bring up to eight, 50 litre sacks (or equivalent 2m sheets of asbestos or plasterboard) free of charge to a recycling site over a maximum of four visits in a month. For example, two visits bringing four bags each time, or a single visit bringing eight bags.

Households will need to pre-book trips to dispose of this DIY waste, telling the council:

  • the amount of material they are disposing (up to 8×50 litre sacks per month)
  • the number of times they will need to visit (up to four visits per month)

If residents need to dispose of asbestos, plasterboard, or hardcore/rubble in excess of their free allowance they can pay for this online through the Somerset Council website.

Should residents need to dispose of asbestos and/or plasterboard before 31 December 2023, they can still do so by paying online using the ‘Do it online’ section. Disposal of hardcore/rubble can be paid for on site until 31st December.

Bookings can be made online from 2nd January (through the waste and recycling section of the council’s website). Anyone who cannot access the online form can call Customer Services on 0300 123 2224.

Not all sites accept asbestos and/or plasterboard, residents should check online to find what is accepted at each site.

Free disposal is only available to the Somerset householders. Construction and demolition waste from trade is classified as industrial waste and this is not entitled to any free disposal.

Biffa can accept trade construction and demolition waste (excluding trade asbestos) and a charge is payable to Biffa at the site. Please note not all sites accept plasterboard.

All of Somerset’s recycling sites will be closed on Monday 1 January, they will reopen on Tuesday 2 January (as per their usual opening days).

The current charges for disposing of these types of domestic DIY waste are:

Prices are per 6ft x 3ft sheet, or equivalent; rubble sack up to 26 inches x 24 inches, or equivalent.

  • Asbestos – £15 each
  • Plasterboard – £5.10 each
  • Hardcore – £3.67 per bag

Minimum charge of £15 and £5.10 respectively.

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