Two years ago, knocking on doors there was one issue every local resident seemed to want to talk about: the state of the grass.
The Tory council had over a number of years reduced the number of grass cuts in the town and in some parts of town the grass was getting up to knee height before a lawn mower finally turned up.
How things look outside the front of your house matters, it’s the first thing you see when you start your day and the last thing you see before you turn in. When neighbourhoods are allowed to go to ruin it hurts our quality of life in ways which are hard to measure.
One of the first things we did when Labour regained control of the borough council was to get the number of grass cuts back up to a reasonable level, while there’s not much we can do to get West Sussex County Council to maintain our roads and parking better, at least we can keep the grass in a decent state.
Since then Crawley Borough Council has been looking at ways we can improve the maintenance of our local neighbourhoods as a whole.
Successful trials have shown that modifying some of the council’s methods for maintaining grass, changing the sorts of shrubs which are planted in shrub beds and the location of bins can have a dramatic impact on the appearance of neighbourhoods. We are now in the process of rolling this approach out across the town.
Yet just because something isn’t the responsibility of the borough council doesn’t mean it should go ignored and we’re building into the council’s systems new ways of working with other agencies and utilities companies to improve the parts of local street scene for which they are responsible.
While the Tory-run county council continues to ignore the town’s needs, Labour-run Crawley Borough Council is working to improve the town for everyone, balancing the budget while protecting services.
Whether it’s meeting the town’s housing needs, improving local job prospects or strengthening our community, Labour is building a better future for Crawley.