Household Waste Recycling Centres - Coronavirus updates


The HWRCs are extremely busy and visitor numbers are high. Please be aware that the sites may temporarily close throughout the day to disperse traffic.

Vehicles that continue to queue and obstruct the approach roads may be asked to return to the site at a different time.


The webcam link for the HWRC sites has been temporarily removed.

The public webcam images currently show a reduced number of people on site following social distancing measures, which gives a false indication of how busy the sites are. They do not show the roads outside the sites and any queues that may be there.

Who is able to visit HWRCs and why?

You should not visit HWRCs under any circumstances if any of the following applies:

  • you are in self-isolation
  • you have COVID-19 symptoms
  • you live with someone who has symptoms

It is not advisable for a member of the public who is considered to be "vulnerable" to COVID-19 to use HWRC services because of the risk of increased exposure to the virus.

Pedestrian access is not permitted at any site.

When will HWRCs be open?

Recycling centres are open during their normal operational hours. Please consider if your visit is necessary at this very busy time. We expect sites to be quieter in a few weeks.

Do not arrive before 10am. Vehicles queuing in advance of the sites opening may obstruct approach roads. Police are monitoring the queues, and you may be asked to return to the site at a different time.

The HWRCs close at 6pm even if traffic is still queuing. Please be aware that if there are queues outside the site when you arrive and it is within an hour of when the sites are due to close, you may not be able to dispose of your waste and will need to return at a different time.

Some sites may have to close at short notice due to operational issues such as staff shortages or queues blocking neighbouring roads.

What will I need to know before I travel to a HWRC?

  • We currently have a high demand for the HWRC services and all sites are experiencing long queues. Please consider if your visit is necessary during this busy time.
  • If any households have had COVID-19 symptoms then the waste should be left for 72 hours before being brought to site and the waste should be double-bagged
  • Avoid bringing excessive amounts and remember to pre-sort your waste before travelling, so we can get people in and out as quickly as possible to help reduce queue times.
  • No medical waste should be brought to the HWRC for disposal
  • The HWRC service is for Northamptonshire residents only. You should bring a document (e.g. a council tax bill) that displays your name and address which must be shown to site staff if requested.

Do not arrive before the site(s) open at 10am. Please do not queue before the site(s) are open to enable staff to get to the site and avoid obstructing the approach roads. Early queuing may cause further delays by preventing recycling centre staff from getting to work, as well as the movement of large waste vehicles on and off site.

Police will be patrolling approach roads and vehicles may be asked to move on if they are causing an obstruction.

Unacceptable or abusive behaviour will not be tolerated under any circumstances and the site staff reserve the right to ask to leave the HWRC without depositing your waste.

If you are queuing for the recycling centre please be considerate and do not block access for businesses, residents or other road users.

Will there be any restrictions?

  • The number of vehicles on-site will be restricted to allow for the safe disposal of waste in line with social distancing guidelines
  • Only one person should leave a vehicle to deposit waste
  • Traffic management will be in place at all sites and due to safety concerns queueing outside of the site will be restricted, residents may be asked to leave and return at a later time
  • The HWRC e-permits system will remain in force, which will restrict access for commercial type vehicles

There may be temporary closures throughout the operating day to disperse excess queuing traffic. We will keep this website and social media updated.

How will social distancing be enforced?

Social distancing will be strictly enforced on-site, which means:

  • You must follow the instructions from site staff regarding the one-way systems for pedestrians that are in place
  • Unfortunately, no assistance for unloading can be provided

Stay safe by wearing protective gloves, appropriate footwear and clothing. Only bring what you can safely handle as staff will not be able to help you carry your waste as they normally would.