Grass verges ‘out of control’

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Residents in the Ballymacoss area have questioned the wisdom of planting new trees in the estate when grass verges on surrounding roads are covered in weeds.

In recent weeks a number of new trees were planted in the Drumard, Rushmore and Knockburn area.

Whilst residents have welcomed the addition of the new trees, questions have been asked about the money spent on them when surrounding areas are in desperate need of having grass verges cut.

One resident noted that grass and weeds on the main Knockmore Road, as well as in the Windermere estate, had reached knee height. “These verges, which seem to be left to grow wild and completely out of control, are an eyesore,” she said.

“Surely money spent on adding trees to the estate could be better used to tidy up some of the main roads in and out of the city.”

Another local resident complained that the grass verges in the Killowen Grange area were also “being left to grow wild.”

Lagan Valley MLA Paul Givan said that he understood the Housing Executive had been responsible for planting the trees, whilst Transport NI is responsible for maintaining grass verges.

“Last year the number of cuts carried out by the Roads Service was reduced to only one from the previous three and already this year the verges have become overgrown and unsightly,” said Mr Givan.

“Residents I have been speaking with are particularly frustrated that some grass areas are being properly maintained that are owned by the Housing Executive but when it comes to ground owned by the Roads Service it is left neglected.

“With the planting of new trees in some housing areas, which will help the environment, but grass verges not being maintained the public are questioning were the priority is being made.

“There is a range of public authorities that is responsible for cutting grass including Housing Associations, Lisburn City Council and Roads Service. The public are not interested in who owns the ground and what organisation is responsible for its maintenance, the public want the grass maintained.

“There needs to be a concerted effort by all the stakeholders involved to find a resolution to this issue.”