ANNOYED residents claim they face a seven-day wait for a slot at a recycling centre, despite there being very few people there when they arrive.

Colchester Recycling Centre, in Maldon Road, reported issues with customers block booking time at the centre.

However, one resident, who asked not to be named, received four confirmation emails, despite only booking for one session.

Essex County Council, which runs the recycling centre, has confirmed there could be an issue with the system which is causing duplicate booking issues. 

A County Hall spokesman said: “We appreciate residents’ patience as we experience an increase in how far in advance you need to book to use Colchester Recycling Centre.

“We are continually improving and refining the booking process, as set out when it transitioned from a trial to a county-wide service in February.

“We have experienced an increase in demand and also identified a potential system issue that may be causing duplicate bookings in some cases.

"We are working to resolve the issue as soon as possible.

“We have increased capacity in the area which has already had a positive effect on availability. 

“We would ask residents to cancel any bookings that are not required by clicking the link in their confirmation email.”

Another resident found the recycling centre was almost empty when they visited, with the number of staff outweighing customers, despite waiting a whole week for a slot to become available. 

Tony Kidger said: "I tried to book this week but it was full for seven days before I could even get a slot.

"I was trying to get rid of household waste and in the end I paid a tradesman with a licence to take the waste away.

"We now pay for garden waste which is fine for me, but it seems I am paying council tax but it’s proving so difficult to use the facilities I end up paying a contractor.

"On the few times I have managed to get in the tip it’s absolutely empty with more staff than customers.

"There’s normally a chap with a clicker counting the cars. I feel his thumb will not ache after a day's work with so few cars to count."

Lee Scordis, county councillor, said: "I raised this issue some time ago now and it is disappointing that it has not been taken seriously. 

"It is now leading to a rise in flytipping, while other residents are having to wait far too long."