SUEZ site-seeing | Part 4 | Surrey, community recycling centre

29th November 2017 Posted by

The next stop for Dr Adam Read, External Affairs Director,  on his backstage tour of SUEZ sites is to Surrey to visit the facilities that are a part of the SUEZ contract with Surrey County Council. Adam is putting together a series of short blogs giving you a flavour of what goes on at each of the sites he visits.

Fourth stop Surrey, community recycling centre.

A few days later, I find myself off on my next visit to my old neck of the woods, Surrey – I had been at school and at University in Kingston-upon-Thames many years ago.

I am visiting the facilities being developed and delivered as part of our 25 year PFI (private finance initiative) contract with Surrey County Council, which began in 1999.


Community Recycling Centre (CRC) bays awaiting residents, with clear signage and clean walkways.


The contract is made up of 15 recycling centres, five waste transfer stations, landfilling and out-of-county disposal contracts. This, and the other community recycling centres (CRCs) across the county have been operational for many years, and the key challenge has been how to adapt them to the changing materials streams and consumer preferences. We now see more cardboard and garden waste being brought for disposal, so in order for them to play an even more central role to the recycling agenda across the county developments have been made, hence the first reuse shop here in Leatherhead a few years ago.


The back to basics reuse shop.


All of the CRCs must exceed a 65% recycling rate (excluding any green waste or hard core materials so that each site is directly comparable) and any income generated beyond this target (they expect to deliver £100,000 this financial year) is shared between SUEZ and Surrey County Council and used to reinvest in the site and other good local activities.

The site currently manages 55,000 tonnes per annum, and even has a separate trailer area, meaning residents of Surrey can bring in their trailers (attached to their personal vehicles) for segregation and disposal.

The site also operates as a transfer station for bulking up residual waste for onward transport to other sites where it can be recycled and put to good use.

Given this is an older site, on a stretch of land that might not be perfect for the range of activities going on, the site was in pristine condition. Queuing was kept to a minimum by a well-informed workforce who would greet cars on entry and help direct them to the right location depending on the materials they were carrying.

My next and final stop of the week is also here in Surrey, where I will be touring the Eco Park which is home to an anaerobic digestion plant and gasifier which are also part of the contract with Surrey County Council.

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