A campaign is mounting to save a recycling centre which has been earmarked for closure by the county council.

Almost 1,300 people have signed a petition opposing the proposed closure of Elstree recycling centre in Allum Way as the council tries to make more than £6 million in savings.

Hertfordshire County Council is currently holding a consultation on suggestions put forward by AmeyCespa - the council’s new waste management company, which will run the county's household waste recycling centres from October.

Under current suggestions, Elstree and Hoddesdon recycling centres will close down, while 14 other centres across the county will have their opening hours reduced.

The only site that will remain the same is the one in Buntingford and all the other sites, including Waterdale Waste Recycling Centre, will now open at 8am, closing at 4pm and the seven-day-a-week service will be reduced to five. 

Councillor Terry Douris, executive member for Highways & Waste Management, told the Watford Observer that more than 1,000 people from Elstree had responded to the consultation and refuted claims the "decision had already been made."

He said: "We are very aware of the level of feeling in Elstree. We are very aware of the significant number of people who have responded to both the petition and the consultation. 

"A very large proportion of the people who have responded have come from Elstree and of course we will take their views into consideration. 

"I think there is an opportunity to refine [the proposals] but it is too early to say what refinements there would be, if there are any, because I would prefer to wait until the end of the consultation period because then officers and members would be able to consider them in absolute detail."

Councillor Morris Bright, leader of Hertsmere Borough Council believes that the closing of the Elstree site would save Hertfordshire County Council £160,000 a year and said that progress is being made in trying to save the site.

He said: "We are happy to take a reduction in opening hours. We know they need to make savings, but they need to treat us fairly. 

"People do not want it to close and we are fighting very hard to try and keep it. I do believe that that we are making progress in trying to save the centre. I’m not saying it will certainly happen, but we need as many people as possible to make their voices heard.

The petition, set up by Councillor Harvey Cohen and Councillor Morris Bright, expresses concerns about travelling time to the other recycling centres and said that this closure could lead to an increase in rubbish being put in black bin bags.

Hertfordshire County Council will decide on the proposals at a meeting on Thursday, September 18.