06.09.23 – Take the Bus, HWRC Permits
Written by Hitmix Local News on 6 September 2023
Older adults and people with disabilities in Staffordshire who are eligible for free bus travel are being encouraged to take advantage of their concessionary bus passes.
The countywide “Take the bus” campaign is being delivered by Staffordshire County Council to help boost free bus travel in the county. By promoting the benefits of bus travel, the authority hopes to boost wellbeing, support sustainable transport, and help grow the local economy.
Concessionary bus passes allow People aged 66 or over and eligible disabled residents to travel for free or for reduced fares on buses across England.
The campaign is calling on those people who are eligible to apply for a pass and for existing pass holders to use their pass more often. It follows research showing a nationwide drop in concessionary bus journeys since 2019.
“Buses connect people to healthcare, attractions, jobs and communities” said Staffordshire County Councillor and Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport David Williams.
David added: “We want eligible residents to embrace the benefits of free bus travel and to get out and about to explore their local area. Now is a great time to give bus travel a go and take in our stunning countryside, beauty spots and buzzing towns and villages. and of course, beyond the fun, there’s a bigger picture. Boosting our bus rides supports the well-being of our elderly and disabled residents and revs up our local economy.”
The campaign will also remind concessionary passholders that as well as being an easy and free way to see the sights of Staffordshire, they can visit friends, take up hobbies, reconnect with nature, and more, all while saving money on travel.
People can read more about the campaign and apply for their concessionary pass on the Staffordshire County Council website or by calling 0300 111 8000.
People using vans and trailers to dispose of household waste at Staffordshire’s Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRCs) will have to get a permit in new plans to improve the service.
The changes come into effect from Monday 4 September and aim to improve services and reduce queues for residents while promoting sustainable waste disposal within the county.
The e-permits are free of charge for Staffordshire residents, are valid for 12 months and allow up to 12 visits each year. Under the scheme, vehicles such as vans, pick-up trucks, tipper trucks, minibuses with seats removed and campervans with fixtures and fittings removed will require a permit. Those with trailers between 1.5 meters and 2.5 meters in length or over 570 litres capacity will also require a permit.
During visits, permit holders are required to inform site staff of their permit number, or vehicle registration to gain access. People without a correct permit, mismatched registration details, or who have already used up all 12 allowable visits will not be allowed to dispose of the waste.
The permits do not cover waste generated through commercial or business activities. A separate, chargeable service is available for trade waste disposal.
Simon Tagg, Cabinet Member for Environment, Infrastructure, and Climate Change at Staffordshire County Council said: “It’s really important that we provide high quality waste disposal services for people and these changes will help us do that.
“The new permit scheme will help to streamline the process, reduce queuing times for customers and help deliver more efficient recycling facilities across our 14 sites. At the same time, it will help us promote and encourage more sustainable and cleaner waste disposal practices which benefits everyone.”
The county council has 14 HWRCs across the county and remains committed to investing in and improving the service while aligning its policies with those of surrounding local authorities.
Currently accepting around 85,000 tonnes of waste per annum across 42 types of material, the recycling centres are visited approximately 1.6 million times a year by residents and some 20,000 times by traders. More than 47,000 tonnes of waste is recycled each year and Just 1% of waste is sent to landfill. Waste that cannot be recycled is taken to the state-of-the-art facility at Four Ashes, operated by Veolia. Here it is processed, turned into electricity and used to power 66,000 homes.
People can find out more about the van and trailer permit scheme on the website.