Recycling, waste and street cleaning services to continue as normal

Recycling, waste collection and street cleaning services in St Albans District are currently operating as normal during the Covid-19 crisis.

St Albans City and District Council’s contractor Veolia is continuing to provide the essential services for residents.

Both organisations are working to minimise disruption with resources being monitored closely to ensure services can be delivered safely.

Residents are urged to continue using recycling and waste collection services as usual.

This includes non-essential services such as bulky waste collections.

In order to prevent further spread of Covid-19, households that are self-isolating and showing the symptoms of the virus should follow the UK Government’s ‘Stay at home’ advice and ensure:

  • Personal waste such as used tissues and disposable cleaning cloths are securely disposed in rubbish bags, and not in paper or card recycling.
  • Any bags containing personal waste should be double bagged, tied securely and kept separate from other waste.
  • Bags containing personal waste are to be put aside for at least 72 hours before being put in the usual external general waste bin.

To ensure that recycling and waste collection services are delivered as normal, residents are being asked to park considerately on congested roads in order to maintain access for collection vehicles.  

Civil enforcement officers – formerly known as traffic wardens – have been instructed to take action against unsafe or inconsiderate parking.

Residents are also asked not to make unnecessary journeys to Household Waste Centres as these are all currently closed.

Residents should hold onto waste destined for Household Waste Centres until they are reopened.

Those seen to be ‘fly-tipping’ and leaving waste outside the gates of Household Waste Centres or next to local neighbourhood recycling banks could be fined or even prosecuted.

Councillor Chris White, Leader of St Albans City and District Council and Portfolio Holder for Climate and Environment said, “This public health crisis affects us all so we’re asking everyone to pull together. Our refuse collectors are designated key workers and are doing a fantastic job in helping to keep our community safe by continuing their essential environmental health work.”

“Our partners at Veolia are working hard to ensure that services are not disrupted to residents and that this situation is managed. I am assured they are taking all the necessary precautions to keep operatives safe from contamination. Of course, if staff need to self-isolate, some services may need to be reduced. We will continue to monitor the situation over the coming weeks.”

Get involved and have your say on life in South West Hertfordshire

More than 2,500 people have so far given their views on what they like about life in their part of South West Hertfordshire, what matters to them and what could be better.

If you live, study or work in South West Hertfordshire, the six councils which cover the area are keen to know what matters to you. 

Dacorum, Hertsmere, Hertfordshire County, St Albans City and District, Three Rivers and Watford are all working together to consider what is important to the people of South West Herts to help to create even greater places to live, work and play, supported by the right infrastructure. A better public transport network, housing, jobs, improved healthcare, schools and greater access to education, and tackling climate change have all been part of the responses received to date.

The SW Herts, Your Future poll was launched earlier this month so that the councils can hear what the people of South West Herts like about the area now and what they feel is important when shaping the future.

The poll can be accessed at:

Cllr Jamie Day, Portfolio Holder for Planning at St Albans City and District Council said: “We’d like to encourage as many local people as possible to take part and tell us what they think is most important when it comes to shaping this part of Hertfordshire over the long term.”

Derrick Ashley, Hertfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Growth, Infrastructure, Planning and the Economy, said:

“If you live in South West Hertfordshire, this is an important opportunity to tell your councils what you think about living in your area, what you value most and what you would like to see improved.

“To have received over 2,500 responses already since the poll was launched is fantastic. It’s great to see a large number of young people getting involved, especially as we are thinking about the needs of future generations. This is all about what we can do to make life even better over the next 30 years and beyond.”


  • SW Herts is one of only a small number of councils in the UK working together in this way. By considering the longer-term future of a bigger area as whole, the opportunities for the future are greater.
  • SW Herts, Your Future does not replace Local Plans. Dacorum, Hertsmere, St Albans City & District, Three Rivers and Watford are still required to prepare their own plans.
  • The poll is the first opportunity for residents in South West Hertfordshire to get involved in the SW Herts, Your Future project.
  • For further information, please contact: Philippa Curran, Iceni,​020 8049 6973; 07795 614 307;
  • St Albans City and District Council contact:  Claire Wainwright, Policy and Communications Manager, 01727 819572;

St Albans District council corporate plan

Councillors back Corporate Plan and Budget

Councillors have approved a Corporate Plan for St Albans City and District Council that will help tackle the climate emergency and a shortage of social housing.*

Improving community facilities and making the Council more business friendly are the other main goals of the plan that cover the years to 2025.

A series of priority projects and targets for the year ahead to help meet the objectives was also agreed by a meeting of the Full Council on Wednesday 26 February.

Councillors also adopted a Budget that includes a 2.8% increase in the District’s share of Council Tax for 2020/21.

Among the initiatives the Council is pledged to undertake in the next financial year to improve the District’s environment are:

  • Continuing with the programme to reduce CO2 emissions from Council houses and lower energy bills by installing 300 more efficient boilers, improving windows and doors at 100 properties and installing 40 new bathrooms and kitchens.
  • Progressing the project to revitalise the River Ver and Verulamium Park lakes to enhance water quality and the surrounding habitat.
  • Developing a Climate Crisis Action Plan with proposals for further actions such as the encouragement of green transport together with funding plans.

The priority projects for increasing the quantity and quality of social housing over the next year are:

  • Delivering four sheltered housing redevelopments to create more than 100 new apartments, including flexi-care flats as well as social rent and shared ownership apartments.
  • Progressing the redevelopment of the site of the former police station and NHS clinic, known as the City Centre Opportunity Site South, to create new affordable housing and commercial space.
  • Moving forward with the redevelopment of Ridgeview, London Colney, to create private-rent flats as well as new accommodation for people on the social housing register who are waiting for a permanent home.

To enhance community facilities, major initiatives for the coming year include:

  • Delivering new Harpenden Leisure and Cultural Centres that include an enhanced swimming pool, improved gym, multi-sports hall, 511-seat theatre and exhibition space.
  • Redeveloping the Marlborough Pavilion in St Albans to create new facilities including a cycle hub, additional hall space, café and improved BMX track.
  • Forging ahead with new play areas for Verulamium and Clarence parks.

To ensure the Council is more responsive to the needs of business, the priority projects and targets include:

  • Producing an enhanced programme of community-focused events for the City Centre’s festive season.
  • Working with partners to deliver an attractive programme for Herts Year of Culture.
  • Reviewing the marketing of the District’s cultural assets well as the management of its street scene and visitor destination role.

Councillor Chris White, Council Leader and Portfolio Holder for Climate and Environment, said: “I’m delighted that Councillors have decided to adopt both our Corporate Plan and Budget.

“We’re now able to enact a plan that has the potential to bring about real change that will greatly improve the lives of the District’s residents with cleaner air, more much-needed social housing and better community facilities.

“We are committed to carrying out a series of actions that will achieve our objectives, including pressing ahead with the project to revitalise the River Ver and delivering scores of social housing properties.

“To ensure we make real progress, we are also pledged to continually monitor our performance so we make real, substantial progress in achieving our goals.

“I’m sure our residents, businesses and community groups will get behind our efforts to make our City and District an even more vibrant, healthy and prosperous place to live and work.

“We need their help to do things like increase the recycling rate and decide on the best designs for CCOS South, and I am sure we will get their support.”

The Corporate Plan and Budget along with other papers from the Full Council meeting can be viewed here:

*Subject to minor changes that will be reported to the Full Council meeting in May.

A new era for St Albans District Council: the Liberal Democrat plan

Following his election to become St Albans and District Council’s new Leader, Chris White has announced the Liberal Democrats’ plans for the local area.

The Liberal Democrats will overhaul aspects of council services to deliver a better experience for residents, visitors and local businesses, and work to improve the environment for all and restore pride in the district. Councillor White this week set out the new administration’s top priorities:

The Environment

“I am delighted that the district’s residents have put their trust in the Liberal Democrats,” Chris said.

“We now have the opportunity to take urgent action on the issues that matter, starting with a declaration of a climate emergency and the development of a comprehensive plan to reduce emissions. The Liberal Democratswill work to reduce climate-changing emissions emitted by the council itself. We will also work with businesses to reduce their own carbon footprints, while empowering residents to do the same.

“We want to do politics differently, working with the community and sourcing new and better ideas from residents and businesses wherever we can. That’s why we will establish an environmental forum to ensure this council continuously improves its own environmental performance. 

“This council needs to be planting trees and safeguarding biodiversity wherever possible, as well as adapting the district to extreme weather impacts, such as increased frequency of flooding and drought. We will launch a campaign to drastically reduce, and hopefully eliminate, single-use plastic in our many cafes and restaurants, and explore stricter environmental standards on developments and council properties.”

In addition to working to make it easier for residents and visitors to walk, cycle and to use public transport, the group will lead development of a sustainable and sensible approach to resolving local parking and congestion problems.


Another priority area is housing.

“We believe that every resident should be able to live in a home suitable to their needs and which is well maintained,” said Chris. “The Liberal Democrats want to make necessary improvements to many of the functions of the council’s housing department, including turning the council into a significant social housing developer in its own right.

“We will revisit this council’s strategy towards the growing homelessness and rough sleeper crisis. We want to provide people who present to the council as homeless and in priority need with high-quality temporary accommodation, not an expensive and inappropriate hotel room where they can’t even cook themselves a meal.” 

Also on the new administration’s list of priorities are improvements to the efficiency and reliability of the local planning process to help enable delivery of the vital housing and commercial developments that the District needs, together with the necessary infrastructure, and updating planning enforcement policies and processes to ensure these are fit for purpose. The new administration aims to agree the Local Plan as soon as possible, so that we can quickly move to refresh the assumptions on which it is based, especially in relation to the city centre.


The group pledges to do all it can to support local businesses against the growing impacts of Brexit, and work to ensure the district’s resilience in the current climate of uncertainty. 

“By working closely with the Business Improvement District (BID) in St Albans to forge a neighbourhood plan for the central areas, and learning from the previous administration’s experiences of undertaking large events such as the Christmas market, we aim to return commercial vibrancy to the high street. We will fight to protect the district’s pubs and retail from developers and crippling business rates, and will review the district’s tourism strategy and funding. We aim to have the new museum breaking even by the end of 2020/2021, and will devise a plan for enhanced or replacement community facilities, such as in Sopwell.” 

Notes to editors

The Liberal Democrats won 12 of the 20 available seats in the local elections on 2 May and the group now has 25 District Councillors, more than any other party. 

Chris White was elected to become Leader with support from all of the Liberal Democrat group, the support of the one Green Councillor, Simon Grover, and Independent Councillor Tony Swendell (Redbourn Ward). Labour abstained and the Conservatives voted for their own candidate.

Chris White announced the new Council Cabinet on 22 May, naming the following councillors as Portfolio Holders: 

·      Cllr Chris White – Leader, Climate and Environment 

·      Cllr Anthony Rowlands – Deputy Leader, Community, Leisure and Sport

·      Cllr Robert Donald – Property, Commercial and Development 

·      Cllr Jamie Day – Planning

·      Cllr Mandy McNeil – Business, Culture and Tourism

·      Cllr Jacqui Taylor – Housing, Inclusion and Protection

·      Cllr Karen Young – Resources

About Chris

Chris White has been Liberal Democrat councillor for Clarence Ward since 2008 and is currently Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group.

Chris White qualified as a chartered accountant in 1984. 

He was elected a county councillor in Hertfordshire in 1993 and group leader in 1994. He sat on Hertfordshire Police Authority from 1995 to 2002. 

From 1995 to 1999 he jointly led Hertfordshire County Council, in coalition with Labour.

Chris became chair of the Regeneration Board of the Local Government Association in 2004 and chair of the LGA’s Culture, Tourism and Sport Board in 2006, stepping down in 2012. He was a member of the Board of the Audit Commission from 2005 to 2011. He also represents the Liberal Democrat Group at the LGA on Refugees and on Brexit.