Saturday, 23 July 2016

Cutting verges and shredding litter

For several weeks the verges of the guided busway have been looking fantastic, with a fine show of wild flowers. But it seems the Cambridgeshire County Council is now starting to trim the verges.

This blog has been contacted by Paul Verbinnen who writes about 'the wide scale destruction of the wildflowers alongside the Busway between Orchard Park and Oakington.

He says:
I understand that the Busway requires maintenance and wholeheartedly wish for more regular and meaningful maintenance, especially where the solar lights are obscured and the surface is breaking up. But it seems to me that over the last two days, 21st & 22nd July, unnecessary and excessive cutting has taken place. Whole stands of beautiful wild flowers have been destroyed and debris littered across the maintenance track. At the same time, the litter was not collected and now lies shredded and dispersed with probably ten times as much to pick up now. All in all, it looks dreadful and I’m really annoyed that some insects may have been destroyed too.

It appears that commonsense cutting of the immediate margin bordering the path has been ruled out and the maximum width selected for flailing. At the same time, the private contractors haven’t touched  the trailing brambles or protruding bushes and so the path remains narrowed. It would appear to be gross incompetence on the part of the County Council for doing unnecessary work and omitting the essential trimming. With shards of glass and metal cans now littering the banks it is only a question of time before that makes its way onto the path.
Here are two photos of the shredded litter.


  1. On Friday 22nd I went to the end of the track at Milton Road, with a pair of secateurs in my toolkit, and stopped at several points and trimmed back a few of the worst brambles.

    I was surprised when I found the grass had been cut, but...

    The stretch along the side of the Science Park they have cut a large area back to the hedge, but left a 0.5m strip along the edge of the path uncut. Lots of work with zero benefit to the users of the track!

    You may recall that when first opened there was a strip of very coarse gravel along the side - presumably for drainage of the surface water - which has become overgrown with vegetation. I guess that if they drive their machinery over it, it sinks in causing the flail blades to hit the ground / gravel, so they have given up on it.

  2. Further to the original letter I have since spotted a few discarded dog poo bags which had been shredded too.
    Later, I spotted a supervised young child running along the bank and the parent was unaware of the health hazard, toxocariasis.
    Perhaps the Council are spending their budget on claims from the public arising from their laissez-faire attitude?


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