Monday, January 5, 2009


Embattled, award winning recyclers, Kerbside Calderdale, are to welcome a celebrity visitor this Wednesday afternoon.

Verity Rushworth, Emmerdale’s Donna Windsor-Dingle, is attending the organisation’s premises in Luddendenfoot, Halifax to present awards to their trainees and show her support for the workforce who are struggling to keep their jobs.

Verity said: “I can’t claim to fully understand the circumstances that have put the workers of Kerbside in danger of unemployment but I do know that the organisation is valued by the people of Calderdale and provides a unique training and employment opportunity for some of the most vulnerable members of the community”.

Paul Brannigan, Kerbside Chief Executive, expressed his joy at the prospect of Verity’s visit: “This is a wonderful gesture and I know that it will mean a lot to all at Kerbside as we enter the final struggle to stay alive. Clearly, the significance of what is happening in our valley has spread beyond its boundary”.

Kerbside initiated recycling in Calderdale – the local authority expressing no interest until regulation forced it to do so. The social enterprise eventually entered into a contract with the Council’s waste contractor, FOCSA, and collected recycling for a tonnage fee until July 2008 when the new main contractor, SITA, took over from FOCSA.

Kerbside had been assured that it would be working with the new contractor but suddenly found itself cut adrift due to the construction of the contract between the council and SITA.

Despite this Kerbside decided to carry on collecting from its 25,000 households even though it now receives no fee for doing this. It enjoys the overwhelming support of its customers who have rejected recycling boxes provided by SITA and showered the organisation with donations and messages of support.

“We don’t know how this will end” said Mr Brannigan “but at a recent public meeting we were given an unequivocal mandate from the people to continue the fight and not surrender our territory – our customers do not want anyone to collect their recycling except Kerbside”.

Verity will retain an interest in the destiny of Kerbside and has offered future assistance: “I have a busy work schedule which is soon to include a new opportunity in the West End but I will do what I can to support the wonderful people at Kerbside”.

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