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Further to a previous post the Community Council wants to share with you the affects of the proposed cut-backs in ground maintenance around the village.  Please find a link to a map showing the areas to be affected:  Comrie-Ground Maintenance Plan

Can we please encourage individuals to write to or contact PKC if you do not agree with how it will affect the green space in your street ?   The Community Council has voiced it’s opinion, but unless individuals add weight to it PKC will not do anything about changing their plans.

How will it affect those areas ?

PKC – ‘are proposing to reduce maintenance on smaller shrub beds and on sites which are less prominent.  These sites will receive two maintenance visits per annum, once in July and once between November and March at which point all litter will be removed.  Any weeds present will be treated with non-selective herbicide during the scheduled visit in July.  Pruning will only be performed if shrubs are causing a hazard by encroaching onto footpaths and roadways or are blocking sightlines. No other pruning operations will be carried out. 

Where pruning operations are to be performed they will generally be carried out by mechanical means i.e. by tractor mounted side arm flail or mechanical hedge trimmer.  Should individuals or community groups wish to undertake a higher level of maintenance we would be pleased to discuss this with them.  Any shrub beds which are in a poor condition, do not provide any aesthetic enhancement to the area or are of little value to wildlife will be removed, and replaced by grass or other lower maintenance surface. 

In addition to the shrub beds and smaller sites, we also looked at grass cutting to verges on the approach to settlements.  In the majority of approaches to settlements in Perth and Kinross the Council only cut verges up to the 30mph signs which tend to mark the boundaries, on the key settlement approach roads.  In some locations however we are currently maintaining beyond these signs.  As such we are proposing to revise the work schedules to cut grass as far as the 30mph signs in your settlement from this April.  This would mean that there will be no grass cutting beyond the 30mph signs outwith the settlement unless this was organised by the community themselves (taking into account health and safety considerations)

It is also proposed to reduce grass maintenance on remoter sites where grass could be left to grow long without compromising the function of the space or creating difficulties for neighbours.  We would continue to regularly mow a strip along any path edges and garden boundaries to keep a tidy appearance and if there are walking routes across the spaces we would mow some grass paths.

It is intended that by taking a consistent approach to maintenance activities across the area, the Council will be able to ensure an appropriate standard of grounds maintenance is sustained.  We appreciate this will mean changes for some sites and communities, and therefore would be pleased to take on board any comments you may have.  We need to ensure that we are balancing our maintenance schedules with the resources available, however there may be alternative suggestions which would allow us to do this.

We would particularly welcome hearing from individuals or groups who would be interested in taking on the maintenance of the areas we have identified.  There may be opportunities for communities to use some of the spaces to grow food, plants or manage woodlands, possibly in association with the Woodland Trust http://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk, or develop and maintain the shrub beds to suit the area.

The Scottish Government are also promoting Citizen Science which encourages the public to get more involved in their local environment http://www.environment.scotland.gov.uk/citizen_science.aspx and again there may be opportunities for people to take this forward on some of these sites.  In any of these cases we would need to discuss and agree the proposals before actions were taken on site.

A list of the sites affected and a description of the changes are available onwww.pkc.gov.uk/groundsmaintenancereview and hard copies will be available in the Council Building, Pullar House, 35 Kinnoull Street, Perth and your local community campus from 8 March 2013 to 30 March 2013.  Any comments or suggestions should be sent to CommunityGreenspace@pkc.gov.uk  no later than 30 March 2013.   In the meantime please find below a Frequently Asked Questions Sheet which you may find useful.

If you want any further information on these issues, please contact CommunityGreenspace@pkc.gov.uk or the Council’s Customer Service Centre on 01738 475000′.

 

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