Delayed Start to Grass Cutting
It cannot have escaped anyone’s notice that it has been a wet winter in the East Sussex area. The latest rainfall update from the Met Office National Climate Information Centre shows that this has been the UK’s wettest winter on record in the national series going back to 1910.
The provisional rainfall statistics for the winter so far (from 1 December 2013 to 19 February 2014) show new records specifically for southeast England.
Added to that, the very mild temperatures have meant that in many areas grass has started to grow rapidly already and as we approach spring, our green spaces will begin to grow at an even faster rate. Ideally the grass cutting should have commenced by already by now, but there are many areas in the Hastings and Rother area where this is not currently possible. Even when it has not rained for a week or more (a scenario we await with relish), the ground remains saturated below the surface. For grounds maintenance operations, wet ground conditions pose a number of problems. On the one hand, cutting grass when the ground is extremely wet can cause significant damage to the ground and as such should be avoided. On the other, the near perfect growing conditions (wet and above average temperature) mean that when the grass is able to be cut it is very long. For the first few cuts there are then lots of unsightly cuttings and it can take a number of cuts before it regains its correct (spring/summer) appearance.
The Landscape Group, Hastings Borough Council, Rother District Council and Amicus Horizon (HRAH Partnership) are working together to address the problem and will be monitoring ground conditions closely. Grass cutting has now commenced where it is possible to do so but it is inevitable that there will be areas where the grass may be longer than usual this spring. However, conditions can change for the better or worse relatively quickly. So we hope to be able to restore the normal grass cutting schedules as quickly as possible and in all instances ensure that residents are kept informed.