A NEW recycling depot will not be required once more items are being collected at the kerbside, according to the Somerset Waste Partnership (SWP).

The partnership is currently procuring a new operator to run its Recycle More contract, which will be rolled out across Somerset from March 2020.

It was originally envisioned that a new depot would be needed to provide additional resources for recycling around Taunton, Bridgwater and the West Somerset area, to cope with the extra materials which will be accepted at the roadside.

But after consulting with its potential contractors, the SWP has ruled such a depot was “not necessary”, with its existing depots being altered to cope with the additional waste.

Managing director Mickey Green updated members of the Somerset Waste Board – comprising representatives from the six Somerset councils – at its meeting in Yeovil on Friday morning (December 14).

He said in his written report: “The Recycle More services requires a new fleet of vehicles, and the type of recycling vehicles we are likely to procure requires a different depot configuration – for example, to enable efficient transfer of all recyclable materials).

“There was a concern that a much larger depot than any of our current depots may be required to service the centre and west of the county, currently served from depots in Bridgwater and Taunton.”

Mr Green said providing a new depot – either by purchasing one outright or leasing such a facility – could “incur significant costs” to the partnership.

To ensure that a new depot would be necessary, the SWP held detailed discussions with each of the potential bidders during the early stages of the procurement process.

Mr Green added: “The procurement process clearly demonstrated that an additional depot was not necessary for Recycle More, nor did it offer better value.”

In order to handle the additional volumes of recycling which will be accepted in weekly collections from 2020, Mr Green said the SWP’s existing depots would be altered to accommodate the new trucks and their contents.

He said: “It remains likely that considerable changes will be made to how we use our existing depots, and some extension of sites and working areas may be required.”

The waste board will formally award the Recycle More contract on March 14, 2019, with the first collections being undertaken at the end of March 2020.

The scheme will be completely rolled out across Somerset by the end of March 2022.