Garden waste collections suspended and crematorium grounds closed
The grounds of Stafford Crematorium have been closed to visitors and garden waste collections have been suspended by the council during the coronavirus pandemic.
The Tixall Road crematorium currently remains open for cremation and burial services. But anyone wishing to visit other memorials to loved ones in the grounds, such as the gardens, will currently be unable to do so.
Stafford’s Eccleshall Road cemetery and Stone’s burial ground off the A34 were still open at the start of this week however.
A large part of Victoria Park in Stafford town centre was already closed to the public for a major refurbishment project. But now other parts have closed for the time being, as well as Stonefield Park in Stone, in a bid to reduce social contact and the risk of spreading Covid—19. And families have been urged not to use play equipment at parks across the borough.
Public toilets across the borough, including the Crown Street and Station Road facilities in Stone, have also been shut, and the Civic Centre at Stafford’s Riverside is self-serve only.
The monthly farmers’ markets and the Wednesday market in Stafford town centre have been cancelled. Stafford’s indoor market has also been closed for now – but some stalls are offering a delivery service. For more information visit the Stalls in Stafford Indoor Market or Stafford Coronavirus Support Network Facebook pages.
Stafford’s Waterfront multi-storey car park has been closed – but all other borough council car parks currently remain open – with no charge for using them until further notice.
Green bin collections for general rubbish and blue bin and bag collections for recyclable waste are also currently operating as scheduled. But the brown bin collection for garden waste and special collections for large items are not currently taking place.
The suspension of the brown bin service – which is due to become an optional paid-for service costing £36 a year in 2021 – has led to complaints on social media. But many other people have been showing their support for waste collectors however – including children creating pictures to display in their windows to show their appreciation.
Councillor Jonathan Price, cabinet member for environment, said: “The support for the binmen from the majority of our residents has been tremendous during this very difficult time. And I am really proud of how those on the front line, as well as behind the scenes, have continued to deliver the service in such challenging circumstances.
“Because of a reduction in crew members due to the coronavirus we suspended the brown bin service so that we made collecting our residual waste (the green bin) and recycling (blue) our priority.
“It has been pleasing to see that many messages we have received show that people understand why we have made that difficult decision – and we will continue to monitor this very important service to our community in this fast changing environment.”
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