HOUSEHOLDERS will no longer be able to take old fridges and freezers to dumps across Hampshire due to a national waste recycling scheme grinding to a halt.

Environmental chiefs at Hampshire County Council have run out of space at waste recycling centres across the county following the crisis.

Now they have made an impassioned plea for MPs to pressure the Government to overhaul the scheme to help dispose of the potentially environmentally damaging appliances.

More than 2,500 fridges and freezers are lying in dumps across the county.

Under regulations introduced by the Government, the responsibility for the safe disposal of redundant fridges and freezers rests with the manufacturers who have been required to set up a scheme to collect and deal with such appliances.

But the national scheme put in place by the manufacturers, and regulated by the Government, has ground to a halt, leaving councils across the country with hundreds of redundant fridges and freezers filling up their waste centres, and no capacity to accept any more.

Council executive member for environment Cllr Councillor Rob Humby, said: “I’m very disappointed to hear that the national issue of collecting, storing and treating fridges is now having an impact on residents in Hampshire.

"This problem has been building up for months with no effective measures being put in place.

"Therefore, we are pressing the government to tackle this issue as a matter of urgency.

“It really cannot be fair on councils or council taxpayers to foot the bill for the failure of this Ggovernment regulated scheme.

“I am particularly disappointed that the Government seems more interested in micro managing every detail of how councils’ recycling centres operate, rather than tackling the urgent national problem of a huge stockpile of fridges and freezers filling up waste sites across the country.

“Until the Government acts to resolve this, I regret to say that, with over 2,500 fridges already filling our centres and all the extra storage we’ve been able to provide, I have no choice but to say we cannot accept any more fridges or freezers at our waste centres.

“I urge the Government to act quickly, and would ask Hampshire MPs to make sure that this matter receives the attention it deserves, if necessary raising it in Parliament.”