RESIDENTS in Sankey Bridges and environmental campaigners are battling against plans to close two recycling centres.

Warrington Borough Council wants to close Woolston and Stockton Heath recycling centres as part of its plan to cut the budget deficit by £30 million over the next three years.

But the move has angered residents living by what would become the one remaining recycling centre at Gatewarth Tip off Old Liverpool Road.

Homeowners say that they already have to contend with the countless numbers of refuse wagons driving past their Saxon Park estate to the tip.

If the other recycling centres are closed it will see extra traffic come from across the borough as people come to recycle their rubbish.

Clr Pat Wright (LAB - Bewsey and Whitecross) said: “This proposal is absolutely ludicrous and any extra vehicles travelling down Old Liverpool Road, along with the existing waste vehicles from Manchester and Liverpool would be a nightmare for residents of Sankey Bridges and the new housing estate of Saxon Park.”

Meanwhile Warrington Friends of the Earth are also protesting against the council plan to close the recycling centres while it still plans to build an incinerator.

John Wesley,from Warrington the group, said “These two recycling centres take several categories of recyclable waste that the kerbside collections and the local recycling bring sites do not accept; including furniture,excess garden waste, electrical items, wood and timber, batteries, and scrap metal. Woolston also takes used engine oil, paint, hardcore and rubble.

“If these sites are closed, the only way to recycle these items will be to take them to the Gatewarth Recycling Centre, involving a round trip of about seven miles from both Stockton Heath or Woolston, passing through the already crowded town centre and further adding to the traffic at Gatewarth.”

The group added that a lot of that waste would end up in landfill sites costing more money for the council, despite the kerbside recycling scheme showing that people are willing to recycling.

Nick Bent, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Warrington South added his support to the campaign to stop the closures.

He said: “The council is crazy to propose closing two of the borough’s three recycling centres, which would put more pressure on the Gatewarth facility at Sankey Bridges and clog up roads there. This council’s attitude to the environment really is rubbish.”