• Dragon Media

Shop staff caught dumping rubbish

Staff at a Merthyr Tydfil Shopping Centre have used an alley behind shops to dump rubbish after telling local retailers and tenants that it’s being recycled.

Cleaning staff at the St Tydfil Shopping Centre have been throwing the waste into a back alley near stores emergency exits.

In the past, Merthyr Town stores have thrown waste into large skips that were regularly emptied, only separating cardboard which was recycled. A letter was sent to retailers outlining the new rules on how to separate their rubbish, sorting into general waste, dry mixed recycling and cardboard. The letter saw that the changes to waste management would begin with immediate effect.

The old rubbish skips were removed and left only cardboard bins available. The other bags of general waste and dry mixed recycling were picked up twice a day by centre cleaning staff and supposedly disposed of into a general waste compactor.

Local retailers have anonymously commented, with most saying that they didn’t know what happened to their rubbish once it was picked up. One manager working in the town centre said: “I don’t mind taking the time to separate the rubbish and recycle. But, I didn’t know where the rubbish was taken and I am very surprised at the town centre’s Manager.”

Lee Simmons, the Manager for St Tydfil Shopping Centre said in a statement: “This is a new process for dealing with waste that is ongoing. In order to better educate centre staff the back alley in question is being used to check that waste is being bagged correctly. We are not dumping waste, we are working towards a better recycling system for both tenants and businesses who seem to not like the change.”

No cleaning staff work on a Sunday in St Tydfil Shopping Centre, so no rubbish can be removed from stores. Retailers have been told to keep their dirty waste in store until someone can collect it on Monday mornings.

Merthyr Tydfil Councillor for Waste David Hughes was concerned that if the dumping continues it could attract vermin and become a risk to health. He said: “I am very grateful that this issue has been brought to my attention. I work for the people of Merthyr Tydfil and am escalating this matter immediately to environmental health.”

- Emily Price (@EmilyPr17272230)