Sudbury: Duo’s bid to brighten up roadside verges and help Anglia in Bloom effort

A new scheme is being proposed in Sudbury where people can adopt a verge in the town and look after

A new scheme is being proposed in Sudbury where people can adopt a verge in the town and look after it, planting flowers etc. John Sayers (left) and Peter Gray are pictured at the Railway Station. - Credit: Archant

TWO keen gardening and wildlife enthusiasts have come up with a scheme they hope will counter complaints about weeds and neglect in their town.

A new scheme is being proposed in Sudbury where people can adopt a verge in the town and look after

A new scheme is being proposed in Sudbury where people can adopt a verge in the town and look after it, planting flowers etc. John Sayers (left) and Peter Gray are pictured. - Credit: Archant

Last summer, Sudbury received considerable criticism from people involved in the town’s Anglia in Bloom bid, because of its unkempt flowerbeds, scruffy verges and untidy pavements.

So Peter Gray and John Sayers, who both live in the town, have decided to ask green-fingered residents to take pride in their surroundings and adopt neglected verges and patches of scrub.

If permission can then be gained from the relevant council or body, the adopters would be free to grow whatever they wish – ranging from flowers to vegetables – as long as they undertake to keep the areas well maintained throughout the year.

For many years Mr Sayers, who is a member of the Sudbury in Bloom committee, has looked after the gardens at Sudbury railway station and has found the work very fulfilling.

He said: “I get a lot of personal satisfaction from doing the railway station and when it looks good, people notice it and appreciate it, which gives me a real buzz.

“Peter goes out with his dog quite often and he has noticed lots of places that need an uplift. He knew I did the banks at the railway so we got together to see if we could come up with a way of encouraging people to make these neglected areas look better.”

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The pair have a map of areas owned by Babergh District Council and they are asking people to get in touch if they know of a small patch of neglected ground they would like to adopt for planting.

Mr Gray added: “A verge next to the tennis courts in Quay Lane, which was adopted several years ago, is a good example of how a neglected strip of weeds can be transformed into a riot of colour.

“We hope that people would get pleasure and health benefits from the work, and feel that they are contributing to the beauty of our townscape.

“The scheme would also enhance and diversify the habitat for wildlife and perhaps help towards Sudbury in Bloom’s quest for that elusive gold medal.”

There are currently 80 people in Sudbury on a five-year waiting list for town council-owned allotments, so Mr Sayers hopes the disused patches and verges could provide a short-term opportunity for some of the would-be gardeners on the list.

Anyone interested in the ‘adopt a verge’ scheme can call Mr Gray on 01787 375080 or Mr Sayers on 01787 319006 and they will seek the relevant permissions. The initiative is completely separate to the town council’s own scheme to get wild flowers planted on banks and verges at key entry points to Sudbury.

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