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High Heavens waste complex

The waste complex at High Heavens has been in operation since the late 1950s. Over time, the site has become an essential part of Buckinghamshire's waste infrastructure. The site is utilised by district council vehicles, waste and parks and open spaces contractors, members of the public and Transport for Buckinghamshire. The facilities on site are listed below with a brief description of their activities.

 

Household recycling centre

Managed by FCC Environment

The complex contains the purpose built household recycling centre, which was reopened in 2009 with a new and improved layout, making it easier for residents and site staff to use. This site, along with the other nine across the county, is run by FCC Environment. The site has one of the county’s two re-use shops which are run by South Bucks Hospice; the shops help re-use several hundred tonnes of householders' items each year. To find opening times, or view a live webcam, visit www.buckscc.gov.uk/services/waste-and-recycling/locations/high-wycombe/ 

Waste transfer station

Managed by FCC Environment

The waste transfer station began accepting waste on 30 November 2015 as part of the larger Energy from Waste (EfW) project at Greatmoor. Residual waste from Chiltern, Wycombe and South Bucks District Councils is brought in by collection vehicles. Once inside the waste transfer station, the waste is loaded onto larger, more efficient articulated lorries to transport the material to Greatmoor via the M40. This minimises transport thus helping the environment. More information on the waste transfer station can be found here.

Garden and food waste bulking

Managed by Countrystyle Recycling

An in-vessel composting (IVC) facility was in operation on site until its closure in 2013. All four district councils started to collect food waste separately from garden waste, removing the need to compost mixed food and garden waste together in the IVC.

The compostable garden waste is now unloaded by district collection vehicles and vehicles from the household recycling centres, before being loaded onto articulated lorries for onward transport. The material is composted at Laverstoke Park and other facilities, and creates a nutrient rich soil improver, reducing the need for peat-based compost.

Once the separated food waste is delivered to site by the district councils inside a dedicated reception building, it is then loaded onto articulated lorries for onward transport to the anaerobic digestion (AD) facility in Oxfordshire, operated by Agrivert. When the waste is processed, electricity is generated and fed into the national grid, alongside quality fertilizer produced for agricultural use. You can find out more details about the process here.

Bulky waste shredding area

Managed by Countrystyle Recycling

Household recycling centres and district councils deliver bulky waste items to the site to be shredded. Some common items are mattresses, sofas or garden furniture. The waste is shredded on site to allow it to be sent to the Greatmoor EfW facility, which has a size restriction on individual items. This helps save even more waste from landfill and also reduces disposal costs.

Closed landfill

The first waste infrastructure on the High Heavens Waste Complex was Nuttings Wood landfill, which closed in the mid 1990s. It has been fully restored and planted with native trees and grassland. The methane produced is collected and powers a generator exporting electricity to the national grid.

Download a diagram of the High Heavens site

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Last updated: 5 October 2018

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