It’s easy to take Cheltenham’s parks and gardens for granted, but the last few months have shown again just how valuable they are.
We are lucky to have so many across town and with such a variety that there’s just about something for everybody. We’ve got trees, flowers, streams, lakes, sports pitches, play areas, wild areas and much more. While the council has kept all our parks and gardens open throughout the pandemic some of the individual facilities were forced to close. These have mostly reopened already and the good news is that from 4 July we are allowed to reopen the children’s play areas which I know have been missed!
Keeping everything in top condition has been particularly difficult with all the restrictions and complications of COVID-19 and I know the council and colleagues at Ubico have been working hard on that. We also benefit from many hours of voluntary help from the Friends Groups that support our parks.
Sadly not everyone has been helping. The warm weather seems to have encouraged large groups of people to meet up and leave behind huge amounts of rubbish. Having been brought up not to drop litter, I particularly struggle to understand why anyone would go somewhere they enjoy and think it’s acceptable to leave all their rubbish lying around to mess it up for everyone else! While the council supplies and empties the bins it can’t follow everyone around to check what they are doing with their rubbish. We do need people to cooperate in looking after our town by using the bins or taking their rubbish home.
I’m obviously not the only one who thinks this as someone – I’m not sure if it was the latest generation of Wombles - has recently been putting up some interesting but unofficial signs encouraging people to take their rubbish home. The council has in fact been looking at some interesting signs of our own which may shortly make an appearance. I hope together they have the desired effect as our beautiful parks mustn’t be buried under rubbish.