Like many of you, I seem to make regular trips to the local recycling centre.
I don’t understand where it all comes from.
My estate car is regularly filled with old clothes, garden waste, cardboard packaging and bins full of glass bottles.
I had no choice but to go to work with the bugs from my green waste bags flying round the interior and the smell from my bottle bin wafting around
For many years, and whilst still living in Portsmouth, I used the centre at Port Solent. But since moving to Warblington, I switched to the centre at Havant on the Langstone foreshore.
A friendlier bunch you couldn’t wish to meet and they’re always happy to exchange banter, especially if I’ve been on the losing end to a female expert on BBC’s Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is!
The centre at Havant was recently enlarged to provide more bins and parking spaces and even includes a snaking one-way traffic queuing system.
Last Sunday I loaded the car with the intention of stopping by the centre at 8am on my way to work. But the gates were locked and the opening time said 9am-6pm.
That’s strange I thought, its now summer so why the shorter opening times? Still fully loaded to the roof with only the driver seat spare, I had no choice but to go to work with the bugs from my green-waste bags flying round the interior and the smell from my bottle bin wafting around!
As I go to David Lloyd gym at Port Solent at 7am three mornings a week, I decided to try the Port Solent centre the following morning.
But my plans were scuppered again when their gates too were still locked until 9am.
I was now becoming desperate and had to cancel an appointment to collect some antiques from a client as the car was still loaded with rubbish.
That evening I left my Southsea office at 5.30pm and made a dash out of town in peak-time traffic to make the Havant site before the gates closed at 6pm, getting there with only five minutes to spare.
When I enquired of a staff member about the shorter opening times, I was told that, due to council cuts, shorter opening times had been introduced.
I can no longer do my recycling on my way to work and have to revert to weekend trips and long queues.
They also confirmed this has already had a knock-on effect and the weekend queues, despite the new one-way traffic system, were spilling back out along the main road.
It will no doubt be the same at Port Solent at weekends and may affect visitors to the restaurants, shops and cinema complex.
Come on Portsmouth, Havant, or Hampshire County Council, make some savings elsewhere or stop wasting money.