Levengrove Park

Where have all the flowers gone, long time planting?

Levengrove Park by Michael Moffat 6Levengrove Park. Picture by Michael Moffat

The decision to strip West Dunbartonshire’s parks and open spaces of flowers has caused outrage amongst members of the public.

The council, who imposed the cuts at their annual budget meeting in March, have been lambasted on social media.

There has even been a suggestion that the electorate should put the hat round to keep the parks and cemeteries looking beautiful.

Gill Sinclair said: “I put a post on here a few weeks ago and got told that lottery funding was for the plants and the works.

“I was also told beds weren’t getting filled in or job cuts happening, even though I did say my son works for council.”

Jean Campbell asked: “Can we have a go fund me page for the flower beds, or is that a nonstarter?”

Betty Andrews commented: “I was so proud to show my Australian husband our beautiful park when we visited several years ago. This is really short-sighted of the Council and it’s not good for the morale of the people of the town who take great pleasure in this beautiful park.”

Christine Sweeney said: “The gardens in the park were absolutely stunning when we were there last time.  This is really disappointing.”

Brian Joseph Flaherty said: “Mediocrity seems to be the goal of the council maybe so as they can blend into the background.

“It beggars belief that this yearly blooming highlight of Dumbarton would be on the list of cuts.

“What next, their long lunches on the public purse, aye and pigs might fly!”

Sharon Murphy sprang to the defence of the council – “There will be perennials planted instead of expensive annuals. Take a photo in July rather than two weeks after the snow has disappeared.”

But David Daniel replied: “Yes, but only in eight beds. The rest are being filled in and grassed over.  I should know as I work here.”

Rab McGechie wrote: “Sad times. The Council can’t boast about their lovely park now. With overgrown grass and no flowers what will be the point of going there soon?”

Community councillor Linda Speir said: “Many of us have stopped going to the park already as it looks dreadful.

“So much (lottery) funding spent to restore the Victorian features of the park only to have the Victorian style of bedding removed!”

David Daniel, whose hopes of getting a full-time post as a gardener in the parks have been dashed by the cuts, said: “Yes they have already started it (the work). You might notice some big areas have only been cut round the edge, the rest of the grass will be left to grow into what they are calling biodiversity areas.

“The whole shire is going to look even more horrible than the state it’s already in at the moment sadly all because of budget cuts.”

Finally, Aggie Erskine said: “The floral display around the fountain is a historic and much loved attraction in Levengrove Park, and has been for generations.

“All those folk who think this a minor change and of little importance are clearly not experiencing the sense of sadness I’m certainly feeling.

“It’s a lousy decision, and the park is losing a major part of its character.

“First the spring flowers, now the annuals. And I also feel we’ve been lied to.

“I assumed all the beds would have perennials, now we’re told some are being grassed over.

“Can this town get any greyer? We should put a new sign up saying. DUMBARTON IS SHUT.”

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