Connect with us

Cambridgeshire County Council

Outraged Tories urge Cambridgeshire County Council to end weedkiller ban

The petition closed with 1797 signatures – well short of the target – but Cllr Chris Boden, a county councillor and leader of Fenland District Council, has picked up the mantle.

Avatar photo

Published

on

A Tory led petition to persuade Cambridgeshire County Council to restart weedkilling may have faltered but that won’t stop Conservative councillor Chris Boden delivering a fiery critique of their policy.

Fenland district councillor Charlie Marks launched the petition but needed 3,000 signatures “from people who live in Cambridgeshire before they will consider at full council”.

The petition closed with 1797 signatures – well short of the target – but Cllr Boden, a county councillor and leader of Fenland District Council, has picked up the mantle.

Advertisements
Pictures
Weeds menace: Some recent photos provided of weeds out of control across Cambridgeshire. These from South Cambs

Weeds menace: Some recent photos provided of weeds out of control across Cambridgeshire. These from South Cambs

In a motion to the next county council meeting on October 17, he will call for the highways and transport committee “to immediately reintroduce the practice of removing all weed growth from paths and roads to be resurfaced”.

He also wants the committee to allocate sufficient resource to spray existing weeds in urban environments countywide.

Fenland District Council Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance, Cllr Chris Boden, said: "It's vital for us to have leisure centre and swimming pool provision in Fenland - places for our entire community to stay healthy and, in the case of pools, learn lifesaving skills."

Cllr Chris Boden: “Residents, parishes, and towns have directly and indirectly complained about the state of the roads, cycleways, and pathways.”

And he hopes for “a factual statement on the actual biodegradable state of the products used be published to counter the incorrect perceptions of carcinogenic and dangerous and environmentally harmful products”.

Cllr Boden wants city, town and parish councils and the public to be informed that “cyclic and preventative weedkilling will be reintroduced”.

Weeds menace: Some recent photos provided of weeds out of control across Cambridgeshire. These from South Cambs

Weeds menace: Some recent photos provided of weeds out of control across Cambridgeshire. These from Wisbech St Mary

He says his motion is to draw attention to and reverse the council’s decision to halt weedkilling under all but the most extreme circumstances.

Cllr Boden offers a reminder, in the preamble to his recommendation, that the joint administration running the council voted in February to remove cyclic weedkilling based:

1: The delivery of a permanent saving of £125k a year.

2: Trialling by the highways and transport service, in partnership with Cambridge City Council, to cease cyclic weed clearing to reduce chemical use.

3: Removal of only weeds causing an immediate safety hazard.

4: Investment in community engagement to gain buy in from town and parish councils.

He says this was to have taken place in the first quarter of 23/24 and an estimated of cost of engagement work is £40k in the first year.

Weeds menace: Some recent photos provided of weeds out of control across Cambridgeshire. These from Yaxley

Weeds menace: Some recent photos provided of weeds out of control across Cambridgeshire. These from Yaxley

Cllr Boden is inviting the council to recognise:

1: The findings of this pilot have not been reported to members generally or the highways and transport committee.

Advertisements
canopyuk.com in-article

2: Evidence shows that a failure to stop weed growth will lead to increased path and road hazards for users and create an ongoing cost growth for future repairs to the council’s infrastructure.

3: There has been no engagement with parishes and towns as outlined in the business case proposed to council.

4: Residents, parishes, and towns have directly and indirectly complained about the state of the roads, cycleways, and pathways.

Mr Browne posted these images to his Facebook page yesterday. He wrote: “As I've been campaigning to combat the swell of weeds across South Cambridgeshire I asked for reports and pictures of weeds - and you delivered!”

Mr Browne posted these images to his Facebook page yesterday. He wrote: “As I’ve been campaigning to combat the swell of weeds across South Cambridgeshire I asked for reports and pictures of weeds – and you delivered!”

5: The joint administration’s decision to halt cyclic weedkilling should have taken place following the outcome of the pilot and community engagement was known.

6: Cycleways and pathways are less likely to be used for active travel, when overgrown with weeds.

7: Cycleways and pathways, in many areas, are unsuitable for active travel directly due to the decision by the joint administration to change the weedkilling policy.

8: Failure to spray weedkiller prior to laying new surfaces such as footway slurry is a costly mistake.

9: Failure to have a preventative approach has led to an explosion of locations of ragwort concentrations throughout the county, which is dangerous to members of the horse family.

Areas like this one in Fenland need sorting says petition organisers

Areas like this one in Fenland need sorting says petition organisers

10: The decision the joint administration made that “only weeds causing an immediate safety hazard would be removed” was a mistake.

11: There is a prescribed list of weedkillers available that are safe to use by operatives, with appropriate health and safety measures in place.

In his petition, Cllr Marks invited residents to agree that “the state of the roads, paths and cycleways in Cambridgeshire are in a shocking state and unacceptable condition, due to this administration’s change to the weeding policy.

“Active travel is discouraged due to the state of these roads, cycle ways and foot paths. Any assumed savings they thought the council would make will be eaten up by higher repair bills in the future.

“Roadside gulley’s and drains will become blocked more often, this will undoubtedly increase the likelihood of flooding. The sight of rapid decay in our town and village centres is unacceptable, as well as the state of the highways between settlements, these all look more appropriate in a post apocalypse movie, than a first world country.

CCC letter to Cllr Charlie Marks

CCC letter to Cllr Charlie Marks

“A policy where common weeds will only be removed when they become injurious is ridiculous (i.e., a trip hazard as an example).

“The new bureaucracy imposed, involved the public reporting those weeds, CCC tasking an inspector to examine those weeds (up to 14 days later) then to decide whether to instruct a contractor or not, is ludicrous in the extreme. We ask for immediate action to return to a pro-active weedkilling regime.”

 

 

Facebook

Read More

Jesus Green Lock footbridge (above) and Baits Bite Lock footbridge have been temporarily closed, following the Conservators of the River Cam’s decision to close both locks. PHOTO: Camcycle Jesus Green Lock footbridge (above) and Baits Bite Lock footbridge have been temporarily closed, following the Conservators of the River Cam’s decision to close both locks. PHOTO: Camcycle
News24 hours ago

Shock Cambridge footbridge closures ‘unannounced and hugely controversial’

Closures will not affect access to the River Cam towpaths or access to Fen Road, Milton

Mind Mangler is at Cambridge Arts Theatre until Saturday, May 25. PHOTO: Pamela Raith Mind Mangler is at Cambridge Arts Theatre until Saturday, May 25. PHOTO: Pamela Raith
News1 day ago

‘Audience wasn’t just laughing, some were in hysterics’ Mind Mangler at Cambridge

REVIEW: Mind Mangler is at Cambridge Arts Theatre until May 25.

Neighbourhood officers were on patrol in Arbury on 15 March when they saw Elsi Hafizi hand over what they suspected was drugs to a woman. Neighbourhood officers were on patrol in Arbury on 15 March when they saw Elsi Hafizi hand over what they suspected was drugs to a woman.
News1 day ago

WATCH: Cocaine dealer caught in the act by Cambridge police

Police watch drug deal before arresting suspect

Labour group now 10 on Cambridgeshire County Council with the decision by Cllr Keith Prentice to join them. New line up revealed today. PHOTO: Cambridgeshire Labour Party Labour group now 10 on Cambridgeshire County Council with the decision by Cllr Keith Prentice to join them. New line up revealed today. PHOTO: Cambridgeshire Labour Party
News2 days ago

Former Cambridgeshire Conservative county councillor moves to Labour

Keith Prentice is the county councillor for St Neots Priory Park & Little Paxton

Charles Swift: a city councillor in Peterborough for 62 years. He is thought to have been the longest serving councillor in the country Charles Swift: a city councillor in Peterborough for 62 years. He is thought to have been the longest serving councillor in the country
News2 days ago

62 years a councillor, Peterborough honours former city mayor Charles Swift

Charles Swift passed away in August 2022 aged 92

Residents are asked to have their say on the Waterbeach to Cambridge transport scheme, that will support thousands of new homes being built in the new town and provide quick and easy options to avoid travelling on the busy A10. Residents are asked to have their say on the Waterbeach to Cambridge transport scheme, that will support thousands of new homes being built in the new town and provide quick and easy options to avoid travelling on the busy A10.
News2 days ago

Help us shape Waterbeach to Cambridge transport plans says GCP

There are three public events where people can find out more

Rytis Lisauskas, 32, had been turning up at the victim’s home in Peterborough every day since their decade-long relationship ended in July last year. Rytis Lisauskas, 32, had been turning up at the victim’s home in Peterborough every day since their decade-long relationship ended in July last year.
Crime2 days ago

Huntingdon stalker jailed for ‘violent attacks’ on ex wife in Peterborough

Victim and her family experienced 'traumatic' time

Renaldo Denollari of Elderberry Close, Ely, grew cannabis in 2 bedrooms and his loft in Ely. He has been jailed Renaldo Denollari of Elderberry Close, Ely, grew cannabis in 2 bedrooms and his loft in Ely. He has been jailed
Crime2 days ago

Jail for Ely man who used 2 bedrooms and a loft to grow cannabis

Police offer reminder on how to spot a cannabis 'farm'

Cllr Marco Cereste, surrounded by family and friends, is believed to be the first person of Italian ethnicity to be elected mayor of a British city. PHOTO: Terry Harris Cllr Marco Cereste, surrounded by family and friends, is believed to be the first person of Italian ethnicity to be elected mayor of a British city. PHOTO: Terry Harris
News2 days ago

In Peterborough Il nuovo sindaco è italiano – the new mayor is Italian

Cllr Marco Cereste arrived in England in 1953 on Coronation Day

Cllr Dennis Jones, new leader of Peterborough City Council, wants to introduce a ‘true café culture’ into the city centre and ‘make it a place where it is welcoming’ PHOTO: Terry Harris Cllr Dennis Jones, new leader of Peterborough City Council, wants to introduce a ‘true café culture’ into the city centre and ‘make it a place where it is welcoming’ PHOTO: Terry Harris
News2 days ago

‘Corbynista, tribal Labour’ leader takes the helm at Peterborough City Council

Peterborough First praised for their 'short but remarkable term in administration'