Over the last few months, local residents have benefitted from enhancements across Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole as part of our Cleaner, Greener, Safer campaign, that aims to bring back a sense of pride across the area.
Leader of BCP Council, Councillor Drew Mellor commented:
“One of our main priorities is to make Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole cleaner, greener and safer for every single resident, business and visitor to our area. We want people to have a sense of pride in their place and the work the panel are undertaking will help us understand how we can transform our city region into one of the best coastal places in the world in which to live, work, invest and play.
Cllr Mellor said: “Our trial approach to grass management (through the ‘Let it Grow’ scheme) has a lot of benefits, not least the increase in biodiversity across our conurbation which is great. I am also aware that it has created a lot of debate and has become controversial.
“Through our Cleaner, Greener, Safer campaign we are absolutely committed to delivering pride in our place and I realise that not everyone feels that this approach delivers on that commitment. Part of trialling something is to take soundings from those affected, and I’ve heard loud and clear that there are some areas where the trial is not engendering a sense of pride in place.
“Therefore, whilst absolutely supporting this biodiversity project, we will be commencing some cutting in areas where feedback and learning supports this.
The Let it Grow trial was set up to establish “grass meadows” in open spaces, on roundabouts and roadside verges to help increase biodiversity.
“We will continue to review any other areas where we’re getting significant feedback from residents to see whether changes in approach is appropriate next year, including the timing of cuts and methods used.”
Councillor Bobbie Dove, Lead Member for Equalities commented:
“Through our Cleaner, Greener, Safer campaign, we can look at redesigning our public spaces to be fully accessible for everyone in our community, including those residents who may experience our streets in a different way to others. We are committed to our fulfilled lives objective, helping people lead active, healthy and independent lives and are passionate about inclusivity, making Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Cleaner, Greener and Safer for everyone.”The council is presently undertaking street audits to provide information on the issues affecting the town centres and other areas identified as requiring attention. Weeding, painting street furniture, this campaign will support longer-term improvement ambitions to regenerate the public realm, whilst continuing to take into account public opinion to ensure wider representation of Cleaner, Greener, Safer priorities are captured.