We Saved the Moondaisies!
We Saved the Moondaisies.
“We” being all those people who contacted Surrey County Council Highways to express their dismay at the destruction of the wildflower verges on main roads last year. Individuals, local council officers and not forgetting Plantlife UK, whose roadside verge campaign has created a national impetus to stop needless mowing in May. A few weeks ago, we were further encouraged by national headlines that the sound of council mowers would be replaced by birdsong. Local authorities would be so distracted by Covid-19 that mowing was off the agenda.
Living a hermit like existence during the pandemic we were, nevertheless, desperate to see the Moondaisies in flower. But then, dismayed to find the A24 coned off. Numerous vehicles, including low-loaders with giant mowing tractors poised, seemingly, to wreak havoc again. Bobby went nuts. Phoning everybody of “influence”. Ranting on Facebook. He was assured that it would be different this year. A modest cut of sight-lines and one metre off the verges.
And that is how it turned out. We are alternately immensely grateful to Surrey County Council, but then mystified. In equal measure. In the first instance, you will see from the pictures that the reduced cutting has had a dramatic affect on the verges of the A24 Capel Bypass. Sight-lines and one metre verge cut are the latest policy. However, drive three miles south and you go over the border into Sussex. The first bypass on the same A24 is Horsham. There, West Sussex County Council have just cut the sight lines on roundabouts and their close approaches. They have not touched the verges for miles.
So West Sussex are far more in tune with the policy recommended by Plantlife UK. And saving money, by not having to cut and cone off miles of dual carriageway. But the verges do have to be managed. And, ideally, one day the machinery used will collect the cuttings both for aesthetic and environmental reasons.
So, we feel we’ve helped and saved the Moondaisies.
You can read the full policy of PlantLife Uk; sign their petition and join us in campaigning to encourage Surrey to follow West Sussex policy, save taxpayers’ money and leave the verges alone in May 2021.
Here are some extracts:
Bertie: “Bobby. It’s bleeding ot. Why are we all sitting here wearing scarves?”
Bobby: “I forgot to take them off after Eamonn’s New Scarf blog!”
Lighting a Candle For Diddley