South Molton Recycle has announced this morning (Monday) it has gone into administration, with 30 job losses.

South Molton Recycle (SMR) has gone into administration, with the loss of 30 jobs.

The company made the announcement ‘with huge sadness’ this morning (Monday) and staff have been notified.

Sarah Portsmouth, director of SMR said: “Over the last six months, we have had our long-standing paper reprocessor go into administration, after 100 years of trading, owning the SMR a substantial amount of money.

“Since then material priced have dropped, in some cases more than halved, and this together with the large increases in insurance and rates suffered over the last three years, have resulted in SMR being unable to withstand this massive assault on its cash flow and reserves.”

What will be affected?

The civic amenity site in South Molton will be closed temporarily while site plans are finalised with other contractors.

Devon County Council has worked with SMR to ensure everything is in place for the reopening of the site in Station Road.

Ms Portsmouth added: “We hope that the site will re-open in the future without loss of jobs.”

The civic amenity site at Seven Brethren in Barnstaple will be taken on by Sita UK, subject to regulations, meaning the service will be unaffected.

Contract talks have been taking place over the refuse collection in Torridge.

SMR has been in talks with Torridge District Council to put forward various ‘practical options to avoid disruption to the recycling service and the loss of 30 jobs’.

Ms Portsmouth said TDC had ‘rejected’ all of the suggestions put forward, and she did not believe members had been notified of the talks.

She said: “TDC has stated that they intend to provide the service themselves and have contingency plans to do so.

“We have offered our knowledge and assistance to them in taking over the service, but this has also not been accepted.

“They have stated they do not intend to take on any staff associated with the contract, so all 30 of those staff have been made redundant today.”

TDC has confirmed today it will be halting kerbside collections ‘until further notice’.

A list of places where residents can take their recycling can be found here.

The SMR Pheonix charity shops in South Molton, Barnstaple and Bideford are unaffected by the news and will continue to trade normally.

The history

SMR was founded as a social enterprise in 1991 with the aims to reduce the volume of waste being sent to landfill, create jobs for local people and offer job opportunities to disadvantaged people.

Until 2008 it operated the roadside collections for North Devon Council, and until today operated the contracts for Torridge.

Ms Portsmouth added: “We are very proud of everything that SMR has achieved and the directors of SMR would like to say a huge thank you to all our brilliant staff, supporters, volunteers, customers and suppliers past and present for their loyalty and commitment.

“Especially South Molton Town Council, the people of South Molton, North Devon and Torridge, who have helped and encourages us so much over the years.”