Residents in Westhoughton have voiced their concerns and complaints with councillors in the area regarding overgrown grass at the cemetery.

People who were visiting the cemetery to see a loved one were left feeling saddened by the length of the grass and contacted Cllr David Wilkinson and other councillors in the area asking why it has not been kept tidy.

Cllr Wilkinson contacted the council for an explanation – council say it is due to staff absences and operational difficulties which have caused a delay in the start of grass cutting this year.

Cllr Wilkinson said the wet weather has also not helped the situation.

He said: “Cemeteries are a very emotional place there is no doubt about that.

“Grass cutting at this time of year is an issue because of the weather, it is very wet and muddy.

The Bolton News: Overgrown grass at Westhoughton CemeteryOvergrown grass at Westhoughton Cemetery (Image: Cllr David Wilkinson)Read more of our top stories here:

“It is ideal growing conditions but not the best weather for maintaining and the longer it gets the more difficult it is to cut, and you’re left with a lot of grass.

“Normally the grass cutting is done by the community payback team, and I understand that they have got a member of staff who would supervise, they are unwell at the moment and community payback have struggled to get a supervisor to cover.

“So, I am pleased that the department at Bolton Council is looking to sort out staffing arrangements so they can get back on track.

“The weather at the moment is a problem to cut the grass at the cemetery, it is a no win situation due to the wet grounds.

“But I am glad they are looking at trying to get some staffing.

“Community payback over the years have done a very good job at maintain cemeteries.”

A spokesperson for Bolton Council said: “Due to staff absences and some other operational difficulties, there has been an unavoidable delay on starting the grass cutting in cemeteries this year.

“We are pleased to say, however, that a new team started work with us on Monday and over the next few weeks will be working their way around all the cemeteries in the borough to ensure the grass is cut back and then maintained appropriately throughout the summer.”

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