Harlow Council and HTS start grass cutting programme for 2024

Harlow Council / Thu 21st Mar 2024 at 09:14am

HARLOW Council and its maintenance company HTS have started its grass cutting programme for 2024.  

The programme has started with the cutting of sports fields, open spaces, and highway verges. Due to the recent persistent rainfall, teams are currently working around wet and boggy areas. These areas will be cut once they are drier.

As part of the council’s priority to restore pride in Harlow, this year there will be a complete overhaul of how grass is cut across the town following pilots introduced last year. The new working practices that HTS is putting into action are:

  • Teams of three each cover defined neighbourhoods 
  • Grass is cut and strimmed at the same time, so it does not become overgrown around obstacles 
  • HTS will aim to cut the grass every 10 working days instead of every 17 working days, to ensure it is kept shorter and tidier 
  • Each team of three is entrusted with specific responsibilities for their neighbourhood, allowing them to take full ownership in maintaining their defined areas

Councillor Nicky Purse, cabinet portfolio holder for environment, said:

“The grass cutting season has now started with new and better ways of working following the successful grass cutting pilot schemes last year where the mowing and strimming teams all moving around the town together.

“HTS will also be cutting grassed areas more often which, coupled with the improvements made to hedge and shrub trimming, and the tree maintenance programme being introduced, will mean that this year the town’s green spaces will look better than ever.”

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43 Comments for Harlow Council and HTS start grass cutting programme for 2024:

2024-03-21 09:34:04

Isn't it basic things that should be done as a matter of course anyway? Stinks of a pre election desperation story to me. A missed Hi Vis picture opportunity though for DS on a lawn mower!!!!

Guy Flegman
2024-03-21 10:40:07

You know things are bad when government bodies start patting themselves on the back for doing the things that should be taken for granted. Truly beggars belief

James Leppard
2024-03-21 10:41:23

Phil, indeed. Maybe the last Labour administration could explain why they left a massive backlog of around 6,000 housing repairs and environmental maintenance works, even when other more sensible and professionally run councils could continue to undertake outside environmental works in a safe, socially-distanced manner whereas Harlow Labour chose to put the entire HTS workforce on full-paid furlough at huge cost to the taxpayer.

peter henegan
2024-03-21 11:01:27

This is a bit of useful public information, no need to politicize it

2024-03-21 11:32:46

I have never seen the grass embankment over the park cut it is always long , they never cut it why ? Is it for health and safety? . When I was little it was always cut ,for the last few years or more it’s never cut , can’t say it’s down to health and safety , as the roads round Harlow have massive potholes, surely that would be health and safety !

2024-03-21 11:33:41

I have never seen the grass embankment over the park cut it is always long , they never cut it why ? When I was little it was always cut ,for the last few years or more it’s never cut , can’t say it’s down to health and safety , as the roads round Harlow have massive potholes, surely that would be health and safety !

David Forman
2024-03-21 12:12:41

It would be nice if Harlow Council came clean about the number of areas that have been removed from the cutting schedule. I can name two in Staple Tye that were axed last July: one in Perry Road by St James church vicarage and the other by Concept Doors factory in Pegrams Road. I know because I maintain the church when weather and time permits. The Concept factory area grass was eventually cut, but by whom is the question?

2024-03-21 13:03:29

Ripping up roots , churning the mud , some of these grass cut parks look disgusting , worse than having it long another couple of weeks to dry up. Abit wouldn't hurt !!

2024-03-21 13:16:37

JL, so you are agreeing it is a pre election desperation story? You argument about the previous administration and furlough is total nonsense and offensive. As a frontline worker who worked all through covid witnessing day in and day out horrific scenes, and the loss of my own colleagues, I am very pleased that the then administration took the sensible decision they did for the safety and protection of their workforce. If only you had witnessed half of what I saw during covid times, you would realise that actually it was the best decision. Don't use a silly grass cutting story aimed at getting you some pre election kudos and then turn it around and compare it to covid times. Ignoramus.

James Leppard
2024-03-21 14:03:05

Phil, please explain why virtually all other councils continued to operate outdoor safely and avoided the huge backlog that resulted from Harlow Labour's incompetence. Oh and please spare us the drama. Many of us had sad experiences during Covid. Try not to exploit or make a mockery of others misfortune to try to justify the blatant inefficiency and waste of Harlow Labour.

2024-03-21 15:10:45

Councillor Leppard. You are extremely rude and offensive. The decision the then administration made was the right one, and one that I would of expected any sensible council to make regardless of their political colour. We are all entitled to our own opinion. "Spare us the drama"? Was Covid a drama? From where I was sat, it certainly was not, and indeed extremely frightening at times. As for "exploiting and making a mockery of others misfortune" to justify the Labour Party, where does the Labour party come into this? It was you who mentioned the Labour Party, not me. To be honest I don't care which political party were in at the time, they should have all made the same decision. I am totally shocked to think that you would consider anyone working on the frontline during that time, would use it in anyway to exploit or make a mockery of anything. "Spare us the drama".... You are rude, offensive, and having just read the council constitution, are in breach of at least two of the rules of code of conduct. I suggest you retract your comments and apologise.

2024-03-21 15:40:05

James Leppard. I vote tory , but you was totally out of order with Phil . i.e. Spare me the drama. During covid there was drama world wide and nobody was spared from it . You are disgusting for saying that . Phil definitely needs a apology from you , or are you too up your own to do that

2024-03-21 15:50:02

And also J Leppard . Your throw away comment has just made my mind up who to vote for 2/5 and it won't be Tory. HAP all the way.

2024-03-21 16:14:46

My god James Leppard,what a horrible person you are.I hope you get disciplined by your party.You are a disgrace.You need to apologise to Phil.Well done Eddie.

2024-03-21 18:48:56

If only hts worked full time hmmm they are joke they fly down river way at 730am and at 2pm there seems to be a race who gets back first. How many hours work do they actually do bi the time they had their breakfast break lunch break I work out they do about 24 hours a week really bunch of wasters

L A Bayliss
2024-03-21 19:52:11

Do they intend to fill all the pot holes with the grass cuttings? Jokers. I smell an Election. Let's hope the voting people of Harlow kick the Torys into the dust bin of history.

Kevin Reeve
2024-03-21 20:49:36

James Leppard you should be ashamed, and an apology is the least you should offer Phil. Absolutely disgraceful behaviour and comments.

Kim Oconnor
2024-03-21 20:57:04

Oh look every one, there cutting the grass... 😄 🤣.. hang on, ya may get another award. Give me strength, what do we pay you for.

2024-03-21 22:15:41

So no reply yet from James Leppard then , Phil , Upset , and Kevin . The silence is deafening What do you think of your Councillor Dan Shields. Should he stand down ???

2024-03-21 22:18:32

Sorry my mistake , Dan Swords.

James Leppard
2024-03-21 23:00:56

I was in Cabinet and just got home. Just so you all know, I lost a relative and a very dear friend during Covid so I am not naturally willing to be lectured on loss. However, all that is irrelevant to what we are discussing. People claiming someone is 'offensive' is a subjective judgment that would not necessarily bear objective scrutiny. The key point here is why did the Labour Harlow Council not follow the practice of other Essex and Herts councils and continue external environmental works in safe conditions. We are talking about comparative performance, results, value for money: the essence of sound administration. Nobody has ventured to answer this. Incidentally, Harlow Labour Council was named the 'worst council in Essex' during Covid in terms of paying out Grants. Meanwhile the current Harlow Conservative administration has been nominated by the independent LGA as one of four councils for the accolade as 'Most improved Council in England'. Says it all, what?

2024-03-21 23:06:52

Jesus! Eddie, Phil and co, what a bunch of wimps and wokes! What has the Councillor said that is so wrong? He is talking about doing a job. You lot are the problem and are all offensive and condescending.

2024-03-21 23:25:46

Tim Read . What I found disgusting about councillor Leppards Spare us the drama remark , was it was aimed at a front line NHS worker who was putting his life on the line before a vaccine was developed, to fight to save the lives of covid patients . A worker who we all applauded every Thursday at 8pm. So I personally don't think he deserved that reply , but deserves an apology, and the last thing I am is woke.

2024-03-21 23:37:12

Come on Eddie, he already said he lost dear ones in COVID. That's not the point. He asked a fair question about why Harlow didn't follow other Councils which all came out ok. Why is everyone so bloody offended? Sounds just like an excuse to stop free speech. We are England , not North Korea!

2024-03-21 23:54:41

Okay Tim . Let's get back to the point . The last thing I am is a Labour voter , but they were following the orders of Central government, the goverment James Leppard supports, the goverment I support. When Boris told us to stay at home . We did not know about this virus, it had not been experienced since 1918. So the other councils took a chance , not knowing the outcome , and struck lucky Anyway surely when you have cut the grass once you have caught up haven't you.

Billy Edwards
2024-03-22 05:05:20

Eddie, It was Phil who called James Leppard an ignoramus so that was the first insult. James did not use any derogatory personal terms against Phil. As for government guidelines, they are that, guidelines. If NHS staff, shop staff, police, etc could work, how come a couple blokes 25-30 metres apart in a field can't work safely? It was our far left, Momentum riddled Labour council that just rolled over for their trade union mates at HTS. As for cutting the grass, are you a keen gardener. How high would the grass be after almost 2 years? Do think you can cut it normally? At least this Council have made huge advances on the mess left by Labour. God help us if those incompetents get back into running the Council! Vote for HAP is a wasted vote and only will serve the Harlow Momentum brigade beneath the surface.

2024-03-22 06:07:15

Looking at the Phil & James Leppard exchange it is very obvious that it was Phil who started to personalise the issue and added insult to injury by saying that Leppard's perfectly reasonable question was "total nonsense and offensive.." Offensive??? He then ends it be calling James Leppard an ignoramus. Upon reflection, maybe Phil should be the one apologising.

James Leppard
2024-03-22 06:36:32

If we go back to the very beginning, it was Phil who alleged that this story was a pre-election stunt by the administration. He is perfectly entitled to express that opinion. Likewise, he has to accept that in a free society his opinion is open to challenge. I still believe my question to him was perfectly reasonable and not "nonsense and offensive" as he alleged. I had no idea that he was an NHS worker. I have huge admiration for them. However, is wholly immaterial to my question as are the hard losses I faced during Covid and my NHS Volunteer service. All of this has nothing to do about efficient work practices, sound management and value for money. Had we stuck to the subject, this unpleasantness could have been avoided. I will say nothing further.

2024-03-22 07:03:37

Eddie, other people have shown that it was Phil who kicked this off. He is a far lefty for sure. They are a highly intolerant breed who use simulated 'offence' as a first resort for closing down free speech and debate. We should never entertain them . They are undemocratic, authoritarian and very dangerous. How often do you hear Tories or Reform UK supporters saying that they are "offended"? It is always the lefty wokes who use this cynical tactic. Let's be honest, even you bought it mate! He got you singing to his tune.

2024-03-22 07:34:36

What is all this rubbish? Phil throws a pebble and James Leppard hurls back aboulder. This is politics and the cut and thrust. You can't all be snowflakes and cry foul, " Oooh , I'm offended ". If you can't take it then don't dish it out. I didn't realise Harlow, a major Brexit area had so many snowflakes and wokes. Quite depressing! Hopefully, the silent majority are more normal and robust!

2024-03-22 08:16:51

Still no apology from JL , but the debates have been really good . Some Tory voters finally putting in posts

2024-03-22 08:27:06

No, James is right. It was important to see nice lawns during Covid, so my apologies for that.

2024-03-22 09:13:24

Eddie why should he apologiseHe only asked a question and has explained it clearly. Still hasn't received an answer. What worries me is that serious debate gets smothered by woke and 'politically correct' BS. One of my biggest criticisms of this Government is that they have not tackled immigration and they have not purged our public sectors and schools of wokeratti and PC. If a Tory government won't, who will? Unfortunately, the Tories will pay the price with many going to Reform UK, which paradoxically will only achieve the worst possible outcome: A Blair II Labour regime, that will see the final ruin of our once great country.

Fact or Fiction
2024-03-22 09:25:29

James Leppard, we have covered this ground before...no HTS employee was furloughed during the Covid pandemic. HTS followed government, NHS and HSE guidance on keeping people safe. A phased return to work took place approximately 6 weeks after the first lockdown imposed by the government. This started with gas/electrical compliance, urgent or emergency repairs, parks and landscapes, cleansing, and streets. Hours of work were adjusted for manual workers, WFH where possible was introduced, all to help social distancing and keeping employees, the tenants and residents safe. In the first 6 years of HTS, the council took £4M + back from HTS which would affect any company efficiency. As can be seen, this money is now being spent on sub contractors in order to recover the position.

Kim Oconnor
2024-03-22 11:01:57

Roy ,,your last comment,we are all entitled to our very different options and to express them freely. That is the democratic way... which was what Phil had done, and James. The difference with James Leppard is, ive have seen him repeatedly knock the people down... his communication skills need brushing up... . My opinion.

2024-03-22 11:53:03

Kim O'Connor, if you care to read from the beginning you will see that the personal insults were started by Phil. Be fair.

Kim Oconnor
2024-03-22 12:10:51

LESLEY. No it wasn't, James said spare us the drama... many of us lost love ones through covid.. I'm all so referring to many other comments by by him.

2024-03-22 13:22:28

Just to let people know , you could not get someone more against woke and snowflakes than me. I have even been banned from your Harlow twice because of some of my posts

2024-03-22 13:29:05

Kim O'Connor you have not read the chain. Sorry but you are wrong. James Leppard's comment you refer to came after Phil had said his question was "nonsense and offensive" and then finished by saying that James was a "ignoramus" in reply to James's first post which did not contain anything rude or disrespectful. Phil was the one that started the insults. So in my view Phil no grounds whatsoever to demand an apology. He should apologise.

Kim Oconnor
2024-03-22 14:44:00

I did not say he should demand an apology .. Leslie, I think if you have been following James Leppard comments to people, you would understand where I'm coming from...

2024-03-22 15:53:03

James has stuck by his view and said that's the end of the matter. I stick by mine, and now we move on.

2024-03-22 16:32:10

HTS you are never going to win, hedges and grass cutting is making Harlow look respectable, I'm personally pleased with how it has started to look. Please keep it up

2024-03-22 17:28:41

I agree

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