Council to scrutinise Woolston park deal

Warrington Guardian: The scrutiny meeting will take place at the Town Hall The scrutiny meeting will take place at the Town Hall

WARRINGTON Borough Council has agreed to scrutinise how an ecology park in Woolston has been managed since £1.2m was spent on the project.

Its scrutiny committee is due to meet on January 28 to investigate how the large sum was spent in 2010, and what has been done to promote use of the site since.

Poulton with Fearnhead Parish Council called for the review as it says the green area next to New Cut Lane Canal, off Manchester Road, is not used.

Chairman Clr Ian Johnson set up the New Cut Heritage and Ecology Trail action group earlier this year in an attempt to organise improvements.

He wants funding for information boards, seats and signs directing residents to use the trail, which lies next to the ecology park.

Mr Johnson said despite ‘many meetings’ with council officers there has been a ‘very poor response’ from the Town Hall.

He said: “The area isn’t being used but the borough council has been dragging its feet.

“It has agreed to scrutinise the whole issue, and management of the site.

“They will be looking at it in detail.

“We are taking that as a positive step rather than focusing on the negative on what has gone before.”

Warrington Borough Council confirmed the meeting would go ahead in January.

It said the park was funded from ‘external sources’, with some coming from the North West Development Agency, and some from the Government’s Waste Resources Action Programme.

A council spokesman said: ““The council received external capital funding to regenerate former brownfield land for use as public open green space now known as Woolston Ecology Park.

“The ongoing maintenance of the area has recently been transferred to the Parks Service and a management plan for the site is being developed.

“Any future funding requirement will be considered as part of the overall parks maintenance budget which is being reviewed as part of the ongoing budget process.”

Comments (1)

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12:42pm Mon 30 Dec 13

Karlar says...

As usual where the proper oversight on the spending of public money is concerned we are only being told half the story. If as reported, "The council received external capital funding to regenerate former brownfield land for use as public open green space now known as Woolston Ecology Park", why were proper controls on how the £1.2 million put in place at the start?
As usual where the proper oversight on the spending of public money is concerned we are only being told half the story. If as reported, "The council received external capital funding to regenerate former brownfield land for use as public open green space now known as Woolston Ecology Park", why were proper controls on how the £1.2 million put in place at the start? Karlar

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