Ashford cleans up as best recycling authority

Ashford Borough Council is leading the way as the best recycling local authority in Kent for a third consecutive year.

The latest figures published by Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) show Ashford has a recycling rate of 55% - a rise of 2% since last year.

Over the past three years, ABC has stayed comfortably above the national target of 50%. The council, once referred to as ‘England’s worst recycler’, now sits as the 35th best recycling local authority in the country.

Ashford’s success can be attributed to a number of factors, including excellent engagement from residents, strong contract management thanks to dedicated staff with an excellent understanding of the contract, a sound communications plan, membership of the Kent Resource Partnership (KRP), and working with Biffa who are an engaged contractor.

In other good news, the latest figures published in KRP’s Annual Report show that Kent’s landfill waste is less than 3% for 2016/17– exceeding the government target of 10%. More specifically, the report highlighted that less than 2% of waste generated in Ashford is sent to landfill. The remaining 98% of the borough’s waste is recycled, composted, or generated into electricity.

Cllr Clair Bell, Portfolio Holder for Environment and Land Management, said: “Ashford’s recycling success is something to be proud of and we could not have achieved these fantastic results without our residents’ ongoing support and enthusiasm. We are proud to remain the top authority in the county for the third year running.”

Since the council launched the new-look recycling service in 2013, the borough has quadrupled its recycling performance, been named the country’s most improved recycling authority, and been shortlisted for two categories in the 2015 National Recycling Awards.