Dudley residents told they can't use Sandwell tip as Black Country waste row continues

Efforts to find a tip for thousands of Black Country residents to use have hit a brick wall after Dudley and Sandwell councils failed to reach an agreement.

The Shidas Lane tip in Oldbury is for use by Sandwell residents only
The Shidas Lane tip in Oldbury is for use by Sandwell residents only

Residents in Dudley were told last week they can no longer use the tip they have used for years just across the border in Bilston after a financial row broke out between Dudley Council and Wolverhampton Council.

And today it emerged plans to have access to an alternative tip in Shidas Lane, Oldbury, have also come to nothing after talks with Sandwell Council broke down.

It means just one site, in Birmingham Street, Stourbridge, is the only one available to serve the whole of Dudley borough.

Sandwell Council confirmed on Wednesday that it will not be allowing people from outside the borough to use the waste centre in Oldbury.

A spokesman for the authority said: "We’re unable to open up our facilities for use by people from outside the borough.

“We only have one recycling centre in Sandwell, and we need to ensure that it is available for Sandwell residents to use.”

A war of words broke out between the leaders of Labour-led Wolverhampton Council and Conservative-led Dudley council after the deal between the two authorities broke down last week.

For the last 12 years, Dudley residents had been able to dispose their rubbish at Dudley Council's Stourbridge tip and at Wolverhampton Council's Bilston tip.

Wolverhampton Council had asked Dudley Council to pay around £133,000 more than the £200,000-a-year it had been paying for access since 2008-09.

Wolverhampton Council defended the increase, saying it was only right that Dudley paid its fair share of the £1m-a-year running costs given that 32 per cent of visitors are from Dudley.

However Dudley Council leader Patrick Harley described the proposed increase as "an utter disgrace" and accused Wolverhampton Council of "back of a fag packet accounting".

Wolverhampton Council leader Ian Brookfield questioned why Wolverhampton should "pick up Dudley's bill", adding: "We are more than happy if Dudley Council wants to come back to the table and pay their fair share."

Dudley Council had said it had been close to agreeing a deal with Sandwell Council, which like Wolverhampton is a Labour-led authority, but no agreement has been made.

The council is still searching for alternative sites for its taxpayers to use.

With all DY residents now needing to travel to Stourbridge, the opening hours of the household waste recycling site just off the A458 have been extended until 6pm on weekdays to cope with the extra demand.

Heidi Marsh-Geyton, acting director of public realm at Dudley Council, said: “Dudley borough residents are no longer able to use Wolverhampton City Council’s tip in Anchor Lane.

"We are continuing to look at a number of options to find a reasonable solution for our residents.”

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