The Parish Council is responsible for all the grasscutting of the public areas in Stokesley. These include those areas of public land within the parish that are owned by Hambleton District Council (HDC) and North Yorkshire County Council (NYCC). HDC and NYCC contribute some of the costs of cutting their areas, but the Parish Council has accepted to bear the additional costs of more frequent cuts than historically HDC / NYCC were prepared to fund. Co-ordinating the grasscutting contract by the Parish Council means that a uniform standard of grasscutting applies to all areas of public land in Stokesley irrespective of ownership.
The grasscutting contract is put out to public tender and is awarded to the lowest bidder who complies with the tender conditions. The currently contract is at a fixed price and was awarded for the years 2013 to 2015 inclusive.
The contract specifies:-
- All grasscutting will be undertaken with cylindrical mowers.
- The number of times each area of grass is to be cut per year.
- Cuts are to be evenly spaced through the cutting season, weather and ground conditions permitting, unless otherwise specified. However, the Parish Council may ask for the frequency to be amended to suit specific events.
- Contractors must use only professionally qualified staff for weedkilling, using Glysophate type (non-residual) chemicals.
- Additionally, where daffodils have been planted in grassed areas, the contractor is notified when to start cutting these areas
- Grasscutting should commence before the end of March each year and the final cut each year is usually not earlier than October.
Those tendering for this contract shall be required to complete a comprehensive risk assessment for the activity being undertaken. An outline of the risk assessment is given in the appendix.
The areas where grasscutting is undertaken and the frequency of cuts are given below.
North Road Recreation Ground cut to give a good playing surface using a low set cylinder mower. Strimming close up to goal posts, play equipment, trees, fences and bollards to be carried out with each cut. Frequency 16 cuts per year.
West Green - Frequency 16 cuts per year. Additionally, paths to be sprayed with Glysophate type weedkiller May and August each year. Trees are to be kept clear of ground level outgrowth (feathering).
Levenside Stokesley Bridge (i.e. east end) to ‘Cattery bend’ (i.e. The ‘Old Drying Ground’) to be cut, with verges and riverbank top trimmed to half way down (1 metre maximum) to river level with every cut. Frequency 16 cuts per year. Strimming of north bank and south bank between the Spread Eagle Public House downstream to road bridge including the low level berms on the south bank either side of the road bridge 4 times from the end of May with care to be taken round plants. Strimming and clearing down to river level to be carried out on the North bank at the end of July and on the South bank May and September.
Lady Cross (Town entry sign) to Stokesley Motors Roundabout - This grassed area is planted with both crocus and daffodil bulbs – care to be taken. Frequency 16 cuts per year.
Stokesley Motors Roundabout to Meadowfield Roundabout grassed areas and verges. Frequency 16 cuts per year. This includes the grassed areas in front of, at the side of and behind the ‘The Mill’ in Eastfields.
Leisure Centre Roundabout and grass verges. Frequency 8 cuts per year.
Station Road from the corner of Glebe Road to the Nurseries. Frequency 8 cuts per year.
Meadowfield Estate - Coarse cuts, fine cuts and strimming to be completed at the same time. Grass is to be cut close into fences and hedge bottoms. Hedge bottoms should be cleared out. Grass to be trimmed back clear of kerbs and footpaths. Frequency 16 cuts per year.
The hedge bounding the North side of this estate is to be trimmed to height of 6 feet (as measured from the south aspect) in October each year.
The grassed areas north of the above hedge at the road junction with B1365 Tanton Road to be cut 3 times per year, commencing 4-6 weeks following completion of daffodil flowering.
Roseberry Avenue - Frequency 16 cuts per year. Coarse cuts, fine cuts and strimming are to be completed at the same time. Grass is to be cut close into fences and hedge bottoms. Hedge bottoms should be cleared out. Grass to be trimmed back clear of kerbs and footpaths.
Riverslea / Riversdene Estate – Frequency 16 cuts per year. All grassed areas along main road, estate roads and footpaths leading into and through this estate, also grassed areas in the cul-de-sacs. Weed control required alongside footpaths and on cul-de-sac standing areas.
Leven Banks Estate – Frequency 16 cuts per year. The top levels and down the riverbank side to a distance of one half metre to be trimmed at every cut. Strimming close up to the bridges, fences, trees and kerbs with every cut. All the river bank side to be strimmed short down to river level once per year. The right hand (north) bank in early July and the left hand (south) bank to be cut in late August. Special areas where native plants have been seeded / planted have been separately identified and are to be strimmed in mid-October.
Tameside Estate - Frequency 16 cuts per year. This includes grassed areas and the verges on entry to this estate from Springfield, Tameside itself, westward to Neasham Lane fence and Northfield Drive, south to College Square. Play areas and shrubberies to be kept trim as well as verges.
The Acres and The Acres footpath - Frequency 16 cuts per year. Verges, open play areas, children’s play compound and shrubberies.
Springfield Gardens - Frequency 16 cuts per year. Verges, footpath and hedge trimming.
The Paddock - Frequency 16 cuts per year. Grassed and shrubbed areas plus children’s play area
The Acres Footpath – Frequency 16 cuts per year. Main grassed area plus bushes to be trimmed
Woodlands Walk - Frequency 16 cuts per year. Grass and hedges
Allen Grove and North Road - Frequency 16 cuts per year. All verges
Meadowland on Springfield
Red area - Frequency 2 cuts per year, grass to be collected and removed
Green areas - Frequency 16 cuts per year.
Tame Bridge Road Frequency 4 cuts per year. Area adjacent to road from White House Farm to the river bridge at Tame Bridge.
Thirsk Road (Malvern Drive up to and including the Town Sign) - Frequency 6 cuts per year.
Thirsk Road (from Town Sign to River Leven bridge [parish boundary[) - Frequency 6 cuts per year.
Stanley Grove to Strikes Roundabout - Frequency 4 cuts per year. Along both sides of A172 to the southern end of Stanley Grove.
Strikes Roundabout to Lady Cross Roundabout - Frequency 8 cuts per year. Verges both sides.
Strikes Roundabout to Tanton Corner - Frequency 8 cuts per year. Verges both sides.
Hedges / Bushes
In addition to the specific comments in relation to hedges and bushes highlighted above the contract also specifies:-
- The widths of the following hedges are to be trimmed annually away from footpaths.
- The long hedge running North to South from The Acres to Tameside
- The short hedge running East to West from The Acres to The Paddock
- The short hedge from Hildyard Close to Peacock Close
The bushes in the following areas are to be trimmed and tidied annually.
- South / West of The Acres
- Corner of Tameside/Northfield Drive
- Hedge corner of The Acres north to Farm House boundary
- Play Park, Fairfield Road
- Eastern perimeter of North Road Play Park
Appendix 1 – Grasscutting Risk Assessment
This risk assessment shall include, but not be limited to:-
- Identification of the hazards and potential hazards which may result in either injury to personnel undertaking the activity or to members of the public who may be in the vicinity whilst the activity is being undertaken, or in damage to the property of third parties.
- Identification and implementation of reasonable controls which will eliminate or mitigate the risks associated with these hazards. These controls shall include, but not be limited to:-
- Routine inspection and adequate maintenance of equipment used to undertake the activity; and
- Establishing an adequate exclusion zone for non-essential personnel and members of the public whilst the operation is being undertaken; and
- Provision of personnel protective equipment for operators; and
- Working practices supported by adequate training of personnel, which prevent unacceptable exposure of operatives and members of the public to hazards; and
- Inspection and preparation of the area on which the activity takes place before, during and after the activity such that any objects present or conditions which exist and which could result in an unacceptable hazardous situation, are identified and measures implemented to prevent the unacceptable situation arising and thereby provide adequate protection to operatives and members of the public.