East Devon Coronavirus update – closure of parks, gardens, play areas, public toilets, beach huts/beach hut sites and suspension of green waste and bulky waste collections

Authored by Sarah Parker
Posted: Tuesday, March 24, 2020 - 20:59

Councillor Geoff Jung, East Devon District Council’s Environment Portfolio Holder and John Golding, Strategic Lead for Housing, Health and Environment have confirmed that the council has closed parks, gardens, play areas and beach huts/beach hut sites.

The green waste and bulky waste services have also been temporarily suspended in order to focus resources on kerbside recycling and refuse collections. Please keep checking the waste and recycling hub on the East Devon website:

https://eastdevon.gov.uk/recycling-and-waste/recycling-and-waste-information/recycling-and-waste-collections-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak/

However, planning and building control remains open for business as construction continues.

“Following Government guidance on social distancing, we have closed our parks and gardens, play areas, public toilets and provision of beach huts and sites to help restrict the spread of coronavirus.

“We’ve been closely following government advice and this is the responsible thing to do to help with our country’s response to coronavirus.

“With restrictions on our own staffing, this will also mean we can continue to provide other key frontline services for the time being, such as litter collection and kerbside recycling and waste collections.

“We urge people to stay local, avoid non-essential travel and observe social distancing. “

Closures

East Devon District Council has closed the following facilities to limit social interaction and to reduce the risk of spreading the coronavirus infection:

  • Play areas
  • Parks and gardens
  • Beach hut and beach hut site provision
  • Public Toilets

For the most up to date information please visit the East Devon website: https://eastdevon.gov.uk/coronavirus/

Social distancing

Where sites can’t be closed, such as at East Devon’s beaches and nature reserves, the council is reminding people to respect the Government’s social distancing and hygiene guidance:

  • Stay at home
  • No public gatherings of more than two people in public – excluding people you live with in
  • Stay at least 2 metres apart
  • Wash your hands more regularly

This guidance is being updated regularly, please visit the government’s website for the most up to date information:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/874732/230320_-_Revised_guidance_note_-_finalVF.pdf

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-on-social-distancing-and-for-vulnerable-people

Suspension of green waste and bulky waste collections

The council has suspended its green waste and bulky waste collections so that it can focus its available resources (drivers and loaders) on high priority services, such as waste and recycling collections. Normal service will be resumed when the current situation improves. We are not able to take any new green waste subscriptions. Existing green waste customer are being asked to renew their subscription when it expires. The council is planning to move all green waste subscription renewal dates to a time period that will match the service suspension period. This will need to be open ended at the moment. The council will add the current suspension period to the subscription period when the service is resumed, so customers will get a full 12 months of collections.

Bulky waste collections are suspended until further notice and the council is not able to take any further new collection bookings. However, if you have a collection already booked East Devon will make the collection as arranged.

Further advice on reducing and managing waste at home - store at home for now if you can

For the next few weeks more people will be at home so many will use their time to tidy garages, sheds, lofts and gardens. Doing this will create additional waste, which needs to be managed at home, particularly as Devon County Council has closed all its household waste and recycling centres until further notice.

  • Charity shops and waste facilities are no longer available
  • Only remove waste from your home that is definitely going to be disposed of lawfully – fly tipping is still a criminal offence
  • Check your stored waste regularly and react if there are smells, flies or rats – cover it if you can
  • Please be considerate to everyone else in your community – our collectors are already reporting disappointing increases in food being wasted.

Here are some tips which will help reduce waste quantities and prevent nuisance:

Food      

  • Only buy or defrost what you intend to eat within a few days
  • Choose food which generates minimal waste (eg off the bone meat)
  • Compost veg, fruit, egg shells, teabags but not waste from meat, fish, bread or processed foods
  • Cook simple meals from fresh
  • Don’t waste good food – keep an eye on “use by” dates

Household items, books, toys     

  • Store at home for now – make a waste space in your loft, shed or garage
  • Don’t replace: avoid, repair or re-use if you can
  • Break waste items down to use less space

Plastics, paper, cardboard           

  • Avoid packaged food or other excess packaging
  • Wash and squash containers and boxes
  • Buy fewer larger containers and refill smaller ones
  • Store at home for now if you can

Garden waste    

  • Chop waste small and compost if you can
  • Dry chopped up woody waste and then burn in small quantities
  • Store under cover or in the dry

Bulky waste        

  • Store inert waste neatly outside or in a shed
  • Delay replacing items if possible

Dog waste, cat litter        

  • Bag it properly and use your black bin
  • If you can, create a waste pit in your garden and layer up the waste with soil
  • Buy longer lasting cat litter – mineral based or compostable materials are best

This is a good opportunity to reduce, re-use, repair and refurbish!

For further help and advice please contact csc@eastdevon.gov.uk or environmentalhealth@eastdevon.gov.uk

 

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