St Peter's parish park warden service set to be reorganised
A reorganisation of the service which maintains St Peter’s parks has been broadly welcomed by parish councillors although with some reservations.
The warden service, run by Worcester City Council, will divide the city into five place areas – essentially North, South, East and West plus the city centre.
St Peter's parish is incorporated into the South Worcester area, which also covers Battenhall, Nunnery, Diglis and Ronkswood.
Each area will have a dedicated team of five employees covering defined tasks.
In addition, there will still be centralised services, such as grass-cutting and tree services plus a separate premier parks team covering Fort Royal, Cripplegate, Gheluvelt and Riverside Parks.
The area teams will have new service standards against which performance will be measured.
St Peter’s parish councillor Alan Tidy, pictured, said: “For our part, the parish council continues to see value in the provision of a wardens service but we need to ensure that it truly covers additional work and that our residents are not paying twice for the same services.
“The city council has confirmed that we are free to use the warden on any tasks commensurate with their skills and experience.
“We continue to place high importance on facilitating such events as community litter picks and Friends of the Parks Project Days as well as things like support for the parish festival, although some of these activities are now supported elsewhere in the city to a degree via the council's community engagement service, which has been split from the operations side of things.
“We will have to ensure that we are able to access all the services from the city that we are entitled to and that the provision of a parish warden does not diminish our ability to do this.
“The parish council will be considering all these matters at its September meeting and it is expected that the revised agreement with the city will be ready for final approval at the October meeting.”
He added that the area teams felt “a sense of ownership” for their areas, learned where the hot-spots were that needed regular attention and were able to operate as self-managed teams setting appropriate priorities for the particular characteristics of their area.
“These are all things that we have seen demonstrated over the years by our parish warden service, so we need no convincing that this is the way to go,” said Mr Tidy.
The warden dedicated to St Peter’s will be shared with Warndon Parish Council.