WORK building the controversial £4million Abermule Recycling Site has stopped for now, say Powys County Council (PCC).

On Tuesday, March 24, the first day of the UK wide lockdown to combat coronavirus, villagers were surprised to see construction workers on-site.

Work on construction sites was a grey area in the early part of the lockdown, but Cabinet Minister Michael Gove has since said they should remain open but implement social distancing measures.

However, Powys Council has now agreed with its contractors that work should stop for now.

A spokesman for the Abermule Communities Together pressure group, said: “It was very selfish and irresponsible of PCC and  their contractors to have just bashed on regardless with work on this non-essential orders when others are following the orders of staying at home.

“It shouldn’t have taken complaints from concerned local residents for work to stop.”

A council spokesman added: “We agreed with contractors to stop work at the site yesterday.

“However, the contractors needed to ensure that the infrastructure that has been completed so far was safe and secure for the foreseeable future and also had to ensure that the site was secured.

“Contractors were arranging for their plant equipment to be moved from the site as well so there could be minor activity at the site on Wednesday, but construction has stopped.”

In August 2018, planning permission was given for the £4 million tip.

In May 2019 the council's cabinet voted unanimously in favour of going ahead with it despite a full council meeting urging them to refuse it.

PCC has stressed  that the facility is to help the authority deal with hitting the Welsh Government recycling targets of 70 per cent by 2024/25.

It believes the bulking recycle facility is “essential to maximise the efficiency” of the collection vehicles and is “ideally located between the two main population centres of North Powys”.