Yapton materials recovery facility uncovered


In an age where as a nation of households and businesses we are producing more waste than ever and recycling is a constant hot topic, wouldn’t it be interesting to find out more about what happens to our waste when we’re finished with it?

TJ Waste & Recycling operates three materials recovery facilities across the south coast in Southampton, Portsmouth and Yapton. These are places that local businesses can take their waste to be sorted and wherever possible, recycled, in a bid to keep costs down and reduce our carbon footprint.

In 2016 the UK generated 66.2 million tonnes of non-hazardous construction and demolition waste, of which 60.2 million tonnes was recovered. This represents a recovery rate of 91%.

Five mind-boggling facts about waste and recycling:

  • The UK produced more than 222 million tonnes of waste in 2016 – one tonne is about the weight of a small car.
  • The UK commercial and industrial sectors generated 41.1 million tonnes of waste in 2016, of which 33.1 million tonnes (around 80%) was produced in England.
  • Recycling and other recovery was the most common final waste treatment type in the UK in 2016, accounting for 104 million tonnes (48.5%).
  • Two-thirds of paper is recycled, making it one of the main materials recycled in the UK.
  • We produce and use 20 times more plastic today than we did 50 years ago.

Doing our bit

We spoke to Martin Wright, Site Foreman at the Yapton facility to find out what a typical day there involves.

What actually goes on in a materials recovery facility?

Third parties bring their waste to us to be recycled or disposed of. Our business is mostly within the commercial sector and these can be anything from sole traders right up to large or chain companies.

We accept all types of non-hazardous waste including general household waste, wood, metal, cardboard and plastics. We are unable to accept items  such as fridges, freezers, asbestos, car engines or tyres and any liquid waste.

In addition to these businesses bringing their waste to the facility, we also receive full skips that have been collected and which also have to emptied and sorted.

We also offer grab hire, bulk haulage and muck away services from this location.

Commercial waste processing, recycling and disposal

Can you describe a typical day of activities?

We will receive a steady stream of third party tippers throughout the day. They’ll come in, have their waste weighed on the weighbridge and pay to dispose of each tonne of waste. Things such as hardcore waste that can be recycled and sold on will be charged at a low rate of £18 per tonne, whereas mixed waste is more.

The site operates a conveyor which runs for most of the day. Waste will be loaded onto the conveyor and operatives will sort the waste into categories such as plastic, wood, cardboard and metal. These items will be dropped down separate chutes and the what’s left will be stockpiled at the end and used as hardcore for our recycled aggregate.

We have six lorries that are based here and they will be coming in and out of the facility throughout the day loading and delivering waste and material. Both TJ’s skips and third party skips will also come in and will need emptying and sorting. In the average skip there’s 3-4 tonnes of waste to be sorted.

Materials recovery facility

What staff do you employ there?

We have eight permanent members of operational staff plus six drivers. These are made up of a roll-on roll-off lorry driver, two tipper lorry drivers and three skip lorry drivers.

Are there any stats you’d like to share with us?

The total amount of waste processed through the facility each year is a whopping 15,000 tonnes.

The total number of loads received per year is 7095.

If you’re a business in the Yapton area with a need for waste disposal, get in touch to find out more about us.