Local groups can bid for £40,000 of grants from Wirral Council to improve the appearance of their local area
While looking through the recent delegated decisions made by Cabinet Members, I came across this recent decision about the Love Wirral grant and the accompanying report authored by Head of Neighbourhoods and Engagement, Emma Degg.
So what is the Love Wirral grant scheme you may wonder? Well it’s £40,000 of money split four ways between each constituency and will be available for “individuals, groups, schools and businesses” to “improve and look after their neighbourhoods”. The money can be applied for between 28th October 2013 and noon on 6th December 2013 with the sole aim of the project being “to improve the appearance of the local environment”.
Between the 13th and 24th January of next year the public will be able to vote online either yes or no to each project, councillors will decide which projects get the funding in the first half of February and successful projects will get the money in the middle to the end of March (the cynic in me would point out that’s just in time for it to be included in various candidate’s election leaflets taking credit for it). However in the report itself it states “this project will enable communities to play an active role in presenting Wirral to the world during the Open 2014”.
A third unstated reason behind all this would be the £1 million cut to the street cleansing contract this year and the threatened strike action that was reported in the Wirral Globe with the rather alarming threat from the unions that Wirral would be engulfed by a “tidal wave of filth”. You only have to look around to tell that the streets aren’t cleaned as often as they used to. So are we heading slowly towards the American “Adopt-a-Highway” system where local community groups are responsible for regular litter picks on a local stretch of the road? Is Wirral’s problem with litter made worse by Wirral Council cuts to enforcement too (which has meant fewer people fined for dog fouling as well as litter)? As usual your thoughts on this topic in the form of comments are appreciated.
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