Thank you for your detailed and informative article on page 8 of your edition of June 25th 2020 about the issue of glyphosate.
As you rightly state in your article, glyphosate, commonly known by brands such as Roundup, is a herbicide that is used to kill weeds and has been the subject of a number of debates about its safe use in public spaces.
There was, however, one significant mistake in your article.
You stated that Ruth Burgess, who oversees the Streetscape operatives that carry out maintenance work on behalf of Congleton Town Council had reduced weed spraying to 75% of its previous level.
In fact, Ruth Burgess and her team have made a significantly bigger achievement than that because they have in fact reduced Congleton Town Council's weed spraying by about 75% to about 25% of its previous level - a very commendable achievement. In addition, Congleton Town Council is aiming to eliminate its use in the near future.
As you also rightly stated in your article, the Chief Officer, David McGifford, Ruth Burgess and myself have had two meetings with a resident who has young children and who has concerns regarding the use of glyphosate. At those meetings, the officers made a verbal commitment that Congleton Town Council will not use glyphosate in or around children's play areas.
I can now advise that I have already notified the officers that I will be submitting to the Community and Environment Committee meeting, to be held on 30th July 2020, a formal resolution to confirm the officers' verbal commitment that glyphosate will not be used in or around children's play areas.
I trust that the Community and Environment Committee will adopt this resolution at that meeting because by doing so, it will reassure all Congleton residents who let children in their charge play in children's play areas managed by Congleton Town Council that while enjoying themselves, they are well away from the dangers posed by glyphosate.
Coun Robert Douglas,