Fury after council mows wildflowers

The town hall has been blasted after the beautiful green space was destroyed.

Friday, 9th July 2021, 4:42 pm
Quinton Smith at the mowed site in Atherton where the wildflowers were

Quinton Smith and Julian Marsh turned the strip of land on Mealhouse Lane in Atherton into a blooming green space which attracted lots of wildlife.

However, they were left dismayed earlier this week when they saw that lawnmowers had been to the site and destroyed all their work.

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The wildflower meadow before the mowers turned up

Julian and Quinton, though, said it should have been blatantly clear that the area was being left for nature and that meadows and flowers need to be left until September to provide food for birds and insects.

Julian said: “It was so obvious that it was a wildflower meadow. Even Frank Spencer from Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em would have realised.

“It’s so frustrating. It’s like the council has just said: ‘here’s a jobs sheet, go and mow’.

“Everybody’s going mad about it. People have been saying that they have been stopping to admire it.

“The council has lost a golden opportunity. There was so much wildlife: we had ladybird larvae, bees, flies and butterflies.

“You have to leave areas like this until September and mow it then.”

Quinton said: “This is the perfect place for wildflowers and I’m absolutely gutted. They’ve come along and obliterated it. We’re shocked. There’s just no common sense.”

Paul Barton, Wigan Council’s director for environment, said: “During No Mow May, green spaces were left to grow as part of efforts to attract wildlife and wildflowers.

“When the scheme finished at the start of June, grass cutting restarted.

“The council was not aware of any wildflower meadows on Mealhouse Lane and so the grass cutting was completed as usual.

“We fully recognise the important role that wildflower meadows play in our bid to tackle the climate crisis.

“We are totally committed to working with residents and community groups to identify and deliver projects such as gardens, orchards or other ideas around naturalising the borough.”

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