MORE than 5,000 bookings have been made by residents wanting to visit recycling centres in West Berkshire in their first week of reopening since lockdown.

With government guidance allowing the reopening of essential recycling centres, West Berkshire has opened two of its Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRCs) with the support of a booking system.

Designed to manage traffic, encourage social distancing and discourage unscheduled or unnecessary visits, the centres are managing any waste that cannot be stored at home due to safety concerns by appointment only.

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"In line with Government guidance, the decision to reopen the recycling sites has been a priority for the council.

"Staff at the recycling sites will ensure that social distancing guidelines of keeping at least 2 metres apart are adhered to.

"Therefore we urge all visitors to please be patient and leave plenty of time for their visit,” said Councillor Steve Ardagh-Walter, Executive Member for the Environment at West Berkshire Council.

He added: “With the reopening of both sites, it means that anyone with accumulated waste that cannot safely be stored can now dispose of it properly.

"Please remember to only use the sites if you have a valid booking.”

Upon going live on May 13, the system managed 5,400 bookings in its first week.

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Elsewhere in the county, queues of cars were seen waiting to enter the Smallmead Recycling Centre in Reading after it reopened this week.

To book a time slot to visit recycling centres in West Berkshire visit