MORE than 300 jobs for South Kirkby have finally been secured with the signing of contracts for a state-of-the-art recycling centre.
After a 12-month delay, work can now start on Wakefield Council’s new recycling facility on South Kirkby Business Park, after contracts were signed on Friday.
The South Kirkby site, which is part of a wider £750m deal to run the district’s waste for 25 years, will create 250 temporary jobs and 60 permanent roles.
A consortium of private companies, which includes Shanks Group and Babcock Southern Holdings, will take over the running of Wakefield Council’s waste and recycling services under a private finance initiative (PFI) deal.
The council first outlined plans for the PFI deal in 2005 and an original consortium of the VT Group and Estech Europe Ltd was set up in November 2007.
But the VT Group was acquired by Babcock Group plc in July 2010 and the plans almost collapsed when Babcock hinted it may have pulled out. However, after months of crunch talks, the deal was back on.
Andrew Balchin, corporate director for communities at Wakefield Council, said the delay was caused because the original company was taken over by the Shanks Group.
He said: “It has taken a lot longer than we wanted, but it was not something the council could have foreseen and prevented.”
The new treatment plant at South Kirkby will allow more waste to be recycled and reduce the amount sent to landfills.
When the new facilities are complete, the town’s current site at Manface Quarry will be phased out, along with other sites at Ossett,
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