Delivering on our election pledge, Bolton Conservatives will invest £1.5m to create a ‘cleaner and greener’ Bolton. The money will be invested in a range of services and initiatives to ensure the whole borough feels the benefit of the new funding.
Executive Cabinet Member for Environmental Regulatory Services, Cllr Adele Warren, said: “We will plant trees which will replace previously lost trees in the borough, mitigate against disease risk and plant community orchards. We will also enhance biodiversity by planting wildflowers at gateway sites in the borough and enhance the areas along the A666 to provide maximum visual impact whilst supporting wildlife.
“This will allow us to purchase equipment that will improve frontline services to assist in keeping our town a cleaner place.
“Our parks will also have investment with replacement seating, allowing residents with mobility issues greater access to our fabulous parks in Bolton. We will also invest to support the refurbishment of existing play facilities.
“We will be supporting our fantastic volunteers by promoting enhanced coordination, payment of insurance, purchase of tools and additional specialist staff resources. We will also refresh the Love Bolton Hate Litter campaign and develop an education campaign on illegal waste carriers.”
Cllr David Greenhalgh, Leader of Bolton Council, stated: “We made a commitment to the electorate that we would begin the clean up of our borough, and improve our green spaces. This extra £1.5m of new money that we are prioritising shows the new administration’s commitment to bringing some well deserved pride back into communities, investing in environmental front line delivery, and promoting a green agenda.”
Below, in line with our belief of openness and transparency, is a full breakdown of funding that has been made available:
Investing in frontline services to improve Bolton’s environment
Equipped Play Areas (Capital) - Refurbishment/Refresh of existing facilities where insufficient alternative funding available: £200,000
To support the implementation of the ongoing 10-year Play Area Strategy and Action Plan, over the course of the next 2 years. To be used on play areas where other funding is not available. This will help to sustain and enhance current levels of provision across the borough.
Park Assets & Infrastructure (Capital) - Replacement Litter bins (100 = £50,000), Replacement seating (50 = £50,000), Repair/resurfacing of Park footpaths (£100,000),Target hardening of parks to deter unauthorised access - £50,000. Replacement/ removal of over-mature shrubbery areas - £50,000: £300,000
Litter Bins – prioritise replacements following condition survey of existingprovision, using information from frontline staff regarding usage, andrationalise numbers using bigger bins where appropriate.
Park Seating – review existing provision, taking account of user circulation and through routes (so aiding less mobile users), logical resting points with views, proximityto residential property (ASB risk)and other available funding sources. Following review, purchase new seats/benches and distribute these across the borough's parks.
Paths – prioritise repairs using knowledge of condition.
Target hardening – deter access to known historic encampment sites and locations with historic motor vehicle ASB.
Shrubbery – remove and replant over-mature areas, where appropriate.
One-off deep clean of road signage across the borough: £50,000
As a one-off exercise clean all signage along strategic routes throughout the borough but focusing on gateway sites and areas where there are high volumes of traffic or visitors passing.
Investing in new equipment to improve front line service standards
Grass cutting (Capital) - Additional new and more modern machinery resource for grass cutting, to address early season peak growth and customer demand, increase the quality of mowing, on key sites across the Borough, including parks, amenity land and open spaces: £110,000
£50,000 for grass cutting back up machinery - The problems with amenity grass cutting in early season arise from the decreased frequency caused not only by the wet and warm weather that has prevailed in spring over the past few years but also from machinery break downs and the effect on grass cutting teams from the three spring Bank Holidays. The purchase of three new front line mowers with associated trailers would assist the cutting teams to sustain target frequencies
£60,000 for grass cutting machinery to increase parks frequencies - Additional machinery to enable parks frequencies to be increased to better support community use and events and improve the aesthetic appearance of grassed parkland to a higher standard.
Route optimisation software (Capital): £80,000
Currently all maintenance routes are organised using paper systems, based on historic information. Route optimisation software will modernise the service and use digital solutions to promote service efficiency. This will enable real time management of teams to react to issues and access both scheduled and reactive work through in-cab technology, across all operational service areas.
Cleansing Equipment (Capital) - Invest in pedestrian electric vacuums, plus maintenance contract, to support cleansing regimes and improvements for outer town centres: £66,000
Pedestrian electric propelled vacuum machines have been used effectively in Bolton town centre over the past four years. They are clean, quiet and manoeuvrable, and can access areas larger sweepers struggle to reach, thus improving service efficiency and cleansing standards.
Cleansing Equipment (Capital) Hot-water-power washer: £80,000
To assist with graffiti removal and cleaning at key sites and enhance cleansing of safer surfacing in play areas across the Borough.
Promoting environmental education & behaviour changefor residents and businesses
Marketing and image (Capital and Revenue) - Refresh of Love Bolton Hate Litter campaign including advertising/ message panels on selective Neighbourhood Service Vehicles (as per Refuse vehicles): £50,000
Existing campaign and materials are dated. Use funds to reinforce educational messages, big up Bolton and promote the reputation of the Council and Bolton as an area that is well cared for.
Focused Campaign on Illegal/ Trade Waste Carriers (Revenue): £20,000
Develop an educational campaign to raise awareness among businessesand residents of their responsibilities around disposal of waste to third parties. This would be developed in conjunction with Waste & Recyclingand will use dedicated publicity campaigns and social media channels.
Supporting our communities to care for Bolton’s environment
Environmental Voluntary Sector(Capital and Revenue) - Supporting and promoting enhanced co-ordination and a more joined up approach to environmental volunteering across the borough, to support existing groups and support the development of new groups: £50,000
Assessing options for bringing together a range of support groups and organisations that undertake environmental volunteering activities,particularly those on Council land. To include additional specialist staff resource for groups wanting to maintain/ develop landscapes, support for grant applications, payment of insurances and pump priming for purchase of tools,equipment and other appropriate resources.
Improving biodiversity and making Bolton greener
Tree Planting (Capital) - Replacement of previously lost trees at appropriate locations, Diversification from current stock due to disease risk (Ash), Use fewer common species in borough parks to broaden ecological value, Look to include potentially small groups of fruit trees as community orchard (subject to contamination checks): £150,000
To support a 2-year replacement programme boroughwide.
Look to enhance through grant funding (with City of Trees) and other funding sources.
Encourage quality landscape design in Town Centre developments.
Biodiversity wild-flower planting enhancements (Capital) along key gateway routes - Creation of new Wild-flower areas and purchase of specialist equipment for ongoing maintenance: £100,000
Explore options for planting roadside verges on gateway sites and parks following assessment of ongoing maintenance liabilities and access. Highway sites include gateway approaches to the town and larger grass areas adjacent to the highway. Purchase of a dedicated tractor mounted flail collect machine to mow wild-flower areas.
Bio-diversity wildflower enhancements (Capital) - To create a gateway feature into Bolton, by enhancing the visual appearance of St Peter's Way central reservations as an alternative means of maintenance. Will also support wildlife and biodiversity along a new greener and more attractive road corridor and supports efforts to improve air quality: £80,000
Introduce wildflower mix planting on central reservation along key stretches of the A666 enhancing the look and introducing more sustainable cutting & maintenance regimes along key stretches of the route.
Detail of plant mix to be developed for maximum visual impact and to support wildlife, biodiversity and air quality improvements.