West Lancashire Borough Council is advising residents of changes in relation to the maintenance of grassed areas adjacent to the district’s highway verges and major roads from this summer.
The changes affect highways with speed limits over 50mph where grass verge cutting has, for a number of years, been carried out by the Borough Council on behalf of Lancashire County Council, as the highways authority. Due to funding changes, from 1 July, the work will again be carried out by the County Council. Any queries should therefore be directed to LCC as the Highways Authority.
Roads affected include the Rainford bypass; roads around Skelmersdale including Grimshaw Road, Stannanought Road and Neverstitch Road; and parts of the A59 through Aughton, Ormkskirk, Burscough, Rufford and Tarleton.
Councillor Kevin Wilkie, Portfolio Holder for Street Scene Services, said "Over recent years, as the government has reduced funding to councils, the money paid by the County Council for this work has reduced, with the result that the Borough Council has had to confirm that we are no longer able to provide the service. The Borough Council will carry out one final cut in mid to late June, and from 1 July the work will revert back to the County Council."
County Councillor John Fillis, Cabinet member for highways and transport, said: "The cutting of grass verges will still take place five times a year in urban areas and twice a year in rural areas, with additional work as required to keep sightlines clear for safety reasons.
"These changes have been made because the county council is facing a very challenging financial situation, with a need to save a further £200m by 2020/21. This is a result of more government cuts to our budget and rising demand for services. For this reason we’re having to take difficult decisions about the services we provide and how we deliver them."
The Borough Council will continue to provide grounds maintenance services in respect of the land it owns, which includes parks, public open spaces, cemetery maintenance and sports pitches.