Dog walker defends park’s long grass amid allergy complaints

The wildflower meadow in Brookfield Park. Residents had reportedly complained about long grass nearby.
The wildflower meadow in Brookfield Park. Residents had reportedly complained about long grass nearby.

A dog walker has called for a return to the long grass in Brookfield Park after it was cut back due to allergy complaints.

When Linda Edmondson from Littlehampton was walking her dog Brady, she was told by an Arun District Council park warden that they were cutting it after several residents nearby complained it made their hay fever worse.

She said she was ‘gobsmacked’ to hear this and felt it was a waste of council resources to mow the grass once a week when it could be spent on sowing more wildflowers. She said: “If their allergies are that bad, why did they choose to live nearby? That isn’t an excuse. It’s bizarre.”

She feared that cutting the grass could affect animals that call it home. She said: “It is a wonderful local resource, but it would become a very boring place that is not as attractive to people or animals.”

An Arun District Council spokesman said they had moved the long grass areas to new locations, and that long grass around the balancing pond has worked well.

They said: “The park is only 17 years old so is still evolving and we will continue to try new ways to encourage

wildlife into the park, including planting new wildflower areas to encourage biodiversity.”

The wildflower meadow, the Centenary Poppy Meadow, is part of a five year project to commemorate the one hundred years since the First World War.