Labour councillor is wild about blooming Harlow!

Lifestyle / Sat 10th Jul 2021 at 04:35pm

THE former portfolio holder for regeneration and growth has told YH that he is delighted to see their plan for wild flower planting bloom across the town.

Labou may have been ousted in May but that hasn’t stopped Tony Durcan taking delight at the flora and fauna.

Cllr Tony Durcan said: “It’s a real joy to see the first of the wild flowers blooming in and around Harlow after the former Labour’s administration set this as one of the councils priorities last year.

Last year we agreed to fund a pilot in key areas to remove grass and replace this with wild flowers and plants as our commitment to a greener and safer Harlow.

“We wanted to enable people to enjoy the many green areas as well as provide an environmental safe space for bees and insects.

“I’m very proud of the success of this pilot and would like to thank all involved include the council own team via HTS.

” really hope the commitment we made last year will be maintained by the current council and that we can design and develop wild flowering in other areas of the town

Photos courtesy of Robbie Hutchins

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18 Comments for Labour councillor is wild about blooming Harlow!:

Jawad Sharief
2021-07-10 17:25:58

Well done i love nature we also need to to invest in research to protect the bees from extinction.

2021-07-10 18:58:51

Great project Tony: more needed especially verges: trials elsewhere in uk have shown that as well as boosting biodiversity, it can cost lots less than monoculture grass.

Paul Henderson
2021-07-10 19:15:47

Great! Pity you didn’t give similar attention to arrest the decline of the Town Centre during your 10 years in power. Half of it looks ready for demolition before it collapses. Certainly the worst Town Centre in the region. A disgrace.

Janette Heath
2021-07-10 20:42:30

I love the wildflowers and I hope we have more of them!

2021-07-11 08:51:37

Looking forward to the restoration of a weekly market, pavement cafes , street entertainers, the free advice centre, a new library and adult education centre for Lifelong Learning and the compulsory purchase of sites held by private speculative property developers that have held development up or to ransom of said Town Centre for decades. The question is whether a Conservative Council can deliver those, perhaps bring back a ski slope, velodrome, a joined up cycle track system, an affordable sports centre and Olympic standard swimming pool and stop the surrounding County Councils and Conservative Government's obsession with driving polluting roads like that along Gilden Way and the Valley bridge barrier crossing into the town.

David Hughes
2021-07-11 09:23:56

Lets hope that the labour party keep their noses out of the new developement of Harlow. The labour party has destroyed Harlow as a town

Pauline S
2021-07-11 10:56:48

Harlow Market slowly priced out by the Council - Epping (on a Monday) far better. Grass areas and shrubs remain poorly cared for so wild flower patches would be better and cost less. Lets hope the Conservatives might work harder for Harlow residents and follow the lead of their MP.

Joan Cook
2021-07-11 11:57:22

Great job, the wild flower verges and roundabouts look amazing! Just need to stop using the weed killer Along the pavements and edges.

Tony Durcan
2021-07-11 12:58:12

Funny how some people wont accept what in essence is a good news story. We want to make our town greener safer and more environmental friendly for the benefit for everyone. We planted last year over 5000 trees. Hopefully now started something that can’t be stopped around planting and supporting wild life with wild flowers and plants Real shame that some can’t appreciate a success story regardless it was a Labour commitment. I’m proud of this outcome and now we need to achieve more. I’m pleased others share my sense of pride in our town Thank you

paul henderson
2021-07-11 16:56:31

Mr Durcan, your sentiments, laudable as they might be, would carry greater credibility were you able to explain how the former administration - of which you were a member - allowed a large, green, open public space between Hookfield and Bushey Croft to be destroyed and used for housebuilding, together with the closure of a car park used by staff and parents of William Martin School, resulting in greatly increased traffic congestion in front of a Junior & Infant school. This went ahead despite numerous protestations of local residents. How do you reconcile your legitimate desire to see wild flower and wildlife sanctuaries flourish when you were a party to their destruction.

Tony Durcan
2021-07-11 19:34:39

I can answer part of this .The town needs to design and build more affordable homes that the council can add to the housing list. This land was seen as a possible location and due process was carried out. I had no direct dealings with the application as this would have been a conflict of interest. I was aware that objections were made and the planning committee which is made up of councillors from all parties agreed to support the recommendations made by the planning officers. It my understanding that a number of 2 bedroom council owned homes are currently under construction. When completed the car park for the school will be open again with additional parking facilities. There was a similar discussion further up the road at the York’s but not sure what is happening to that. Told the other site at the old Lister surgery has been stopped which will again delay new council homes been accessible and available. Not sure of the justification of that decision ,sorry I can’t be more helpful

Sylvia watson
2021-07-12 07:58:21

Roundabouts full of flowers is great but what about planned destruction of wetlands for stort river crossing ? No amount of flowers can make up for that

2021-07-12 10:04:04

I use the Latton Street cycle track regularly, it was delightful to see the wildflower beds in bloom. While not contributing greatly in the conservation of our endangered species, it is a step in the right direction and will undoubtedly provide some nectar for our insects whilst in bloom. Perhaps go further and introduce a hay meadow, and more cover for our larger animals. Or go even further and reintroduce and protect Hedgehogs...Once a common sight but now a rare occurrence. Gardeners and Allotment holders would appreciate. Thankyou to those involved. It is ironic however that a short distance down that cycle track towards the River there exists a haven for wildlife that provides a fragile wildlife corridor. The Small Wood provides habitats for protected species and Latton Mill still provides clean water to its brooks.. But has now been earmarked for destruction to make way for a Collosal Highway. I implore you. Save Our Stort

2021-07-12 10:39:14

I can clearly tell you that what Cllr Durcan has posted is not correct, readers should be aware that due process was NOT carried out in the proper manor in respect of the land at Bushey Croft. I have all the facts in this case, which I have spelt out in earlier posts on yourharlow. The residents were deceived by the Council, indeed I think Councillors were not made fully aware of the facts when they agreed to the building of these homes.

Paul Henderson
2021-07-12 14:20:02

Tenpin, so what happened re Bushey Croft as the former administration seem to hold this as a great example of council house building.

Tony Durcan
2021-07-12 21:07:05

If Tenpin has evidence that the planning process was corrupt then he could have lodge a formal complaint. He didn’t so it’s a little late in making such unfounded statements. Regardless of this I hope the council will remain committed to planting more wild flower areas.

2021-07-13 08:33:26

Tony, I have never said the Planning Application was corrupt, what I have said is that I don't think members were fully aware of all the circumstances when deciding on the Planning Application. Making a formal complaint with the Council, who were at fault would have done no good and therefore I took the matter up with the Secretary of State and our MP. The statements are not unfounded as you well know and I have outlined them in these pages before. Paul .... 1) It failed to advise residents that this land was designated for allotment use and what it needed to do to get this changed to housing land 2) In it's application to the Secretary of State to get the change of use needed from allotments to housing land the council stated that it tried to get vacant allotments used by advertising them in Harlow Times. I looked in the previous 14 issues dating back to 2017 and could find no such advert. 3) In it's application it failed to mention that over 180 had objected to the Planning Application. There are more examples, the details are to long for this response. I am firmly of the belief that residents responded in the ballot box when Cllr Ingall lost his seat in this ward.

2021-07-14 21:41:40

No comment Tony?

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