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Town council: ‘Our work will be a cut above the rest when it comes to clearing the grass’

Freddie Ripley, 10, with Councillor Mark Winn in Long Meadow, Bedgrove

Freddie Ripley, 10, with Councillor Mark Winn in Long Meadow, Bedgrove

Town council chiefs think they can be a cut above the rest when it comes to clearing tall grass compared to their county council counterparts.

The potential for devolving the service down to town council level was discussed at the recent Aylesbury Town Council meeting, where councillors said they fully supported the move.

The idea comes after Bucks County Council’s cost cutting measures have affected the number of mowings this year, leading residents to complain about unkempt open areas in some parts of the town.

Mark Winn, of Bedgrove Ward, has received a number of complaints over the length of the grass in aptly named Long Meadow, which had grown so tall it was preventing youngsters from playing football.

Town council leader Mike Smith said: “I am confident we can do a better job than Bucks County Council can with its current budget, and we’ll give it a good go.”

Former mayor Tom Hunter-Watts said: “The public will expect a visible difference in the first year, so we’ve got to be prepared for a lot of feedback and expectation.

“We’ve also got to think about where our sources of income will be coming from – maybe we could raise some money by cutting people’s lawns privately?”

Clerk Keith Gray said: “I’m old fashioned in the way that I think councils should provide employment opportunities for local people, like the old days.”

Councillor Niknam Hussain said: “I don’t agree with that. I would be dead against competing for business with local companies.”

Deputy mayor Allison Harrison said: “We’ve got the infrastructure, we’ve got the team and we’re confident we can provide a better service and better value for money.

“We’re more grass roots with our residents and this is an exciting opportunity that we as members should give our full support to.”

The arrangement could be ready by April next year.

 

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