Council sending town 'to the dogs'


Emily Davies

A CHIRK councillor has accused his own council of letting the town ‘go to the dogs’.
Councillor Terry Evans vented his frustration after the unitary authority delayed cutting grass verges in the town, leaving them overgrown.
And he says the situation will have a detrimental impact on tourism and the town’s chances in this year’s Wales in Bloom competition.
He said: “Chirk is supposed to be one of Wrexham’s tourism hubs.
“Tourism is a big thing for Chirk. Over the last few years it has increased dramatically. The accolades that we have won is helping us to get all this extra visitors and that’s because the town is nice, it looks nice.”

He added: “I’ve been to Shropshire and it’s a credit to their council; these flower beds and verges, then you go through Chirk and it’s a disgrace to Wrexham County Borough.”
Cllr Evans also highlighted the work by volunteers who recently cut the front of Lodgevale Park themselves, in an attempt to alleviate the issue.
He continued: “It looks immaculate, but there’s only so much you can put in volunteers before you break them. It’s always the same group of volunteers, it’s unfair.
“I know the (WCBC) budgets are being severed, but you have got to prioritise things. Are you protecting or enhancing?
“Grass cutting in Chirk is going to the dogs and what I can see at the moment is that Wrexham Council is letting it go to the dogs - it’s such a mess. It’s frustrating.”
Cllr Bob Dutton, OBE, Lead Member for Environment for Wrexham County Borough Council said: “It has been well documented that Wrexham council is facing £45 million worth of cuts over the next five years. This is due to the extremely difficult circumstances brought about by the pressures put upon all local authorities across Wales.
“Due to these budget pressures, Wrexham’s grounds maintenance budget has been reduced by £300,000 for 2014/15. As part of the Reshaping Services programme it was proposed to change the way we cut grass through reducing the frequency of cutting grass.
“It was proposed to reduce the number of cuts of the majority of the areas, which includes all the open spaces and verges. Highway verges will be cut for safety splays, visibility requirements and signage or where the grass becomes a road traffic hazard.”

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