An update on the Council’s Green Space, Weed and Verge Management

If you require any further information in relation to this blog or any alternative formats e.g. Large Print etc. please contact 01792 637732 or email

Scrutiny Councillors on the Natural Environment Performance Panel recently met to discuss the Council’s Green Space / Weed and Verge Management.

The Panel heard that weed management is run on a three-year contract with an external company. In 2021, the programme faced a significant setback due to rain and adverse weather conditions. Cllr Mark Thomas, Cabinet Member for Environment Enhancement & Infrastructure Management, explained that the Highways department now has extra budget allowance to create a dedicated team, focussing on hotspot areas for weed management and control.

Panel Members expressed concern regarding glyphosate use and risk posed both to human health and the well-being of some insect and bird species and queried the current option of wards opting out of weed-spraying. Cllr Thomas highlighted that glyphosate is a fully licensed product and the Council is not using un-safe products in the weed control programme.  He explained that although individual houses could not opt out, wards or streets in Swansea could opt out of the week spraying programme.

The Panel discussed efforts to improve biodiversity and heard that there will be some areas of grass that are left to grow longer which encourages wildflower growth. Such areas left to meadow were sometimes viewed by the public as having been unattended. Panel Members suggested that temporary signage be erected at meadow sites to better inform the public.

The Panel heard that Welsh Government funding has recently enabled the purchase of specialist ‘cut and collect’ machinery, which is successfully allowing the removal of grass cuttings from wildflower sites.

Panel Members raised some concerns over potential sale of green space areas to members of the public and have expressed interest to hear more about this, and the process in place for sale of such sites to the public.

The Panel was pleased to hear that a Biodiversity Officer has been appointed since this was recommended by the Natural Environment Scrutiny Inquiry Panel. However, Panel Members raised concerns over the part-time nature of this post and agreed that a long-term commitment to funding a full-time post would be beneficial.

Click here to view all details discussed at this meeting.

Leave a Comment


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.