Green space jobs in Birmingham at risk as further cuts loom

More budget cuts at Birmingham City Council threaten park keepers, rangers and woodland staff.

Birmingham: more funding cuts - image: Birmingham City Council
Birmingham: more funding cuts - image: Birmingham City Council

Birmingham's park keepers, rangers and woodland staff are facing redundancy as the city council aims to cut £10.4m from the service.

The savings - £2.6m per year over the next four years - have been published as part of the council's draft budget. It needs to cut more than £460m as a whole by 2017-18, on top of more than £375m saved over the past three years.

Introducing the draft budget, council leader Sir Albert Bore said: "Birmingham City Council faces a severe financial crisis caused by the most dramatic cut ever in Government funding for local councils.

"As funding is reduced year after year, it becomes more and more difficult to find savings through efficiencies or back-office cuts and we are now at the point where difficult decisions about frontline services cannot be avoided."

Options under consideration include removing the 32 park keeper posts and the woodland team.

Ornamental grass cutting would be reduced while more meadows would be established to bring down the frequency of amenity grass-cutting operations.

The ranger service, slashed from 13 sites to six in 2010, is facing an unspecified "further reduction", while play area provision and inspection is also under review.

Consultation on proposals included several public meetings and a webchat with Birmingham councillors.

The local authority is now considering the feedback and final proposals are due to be published later this month before the budget-setting meeting on 4 March.

Civic pride - Award-winning floral displays

Birmingham has a long history of horticultural civic pride and its displays have won several gold medals at RHS shows.

Last year, its colourful four-part themed display celebrating the city's new £188m library, "Enlightenment", won gold at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show and Best Exhibit in the floral marquee awards at RHS Flower Show Birmingham.

The council is also competing at this year's Chelsea with a display to mark the anniversary of the start of World War One.


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Read These Next

Horticulture Week Custodian Award - Horticulture Week Custodian Award

Horticulture Week Custodian Award - Horticulture Week Custodian Award

Winner - David Richardson, DIrector of Horticulture, Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Horticulture Week Custodian Award - Best Partnership: Third Sector (parks, gardens or tree care)

Horticulture Week Custodian Award - Best Partnership: Third Sector (parks, gardens or tree care)

Winner - Greenbelt Group and the Woodland Trust for Glenrothes Woodlands

Horticulture Week Custodian Award - Best Green Space/Infrastructure Strategy

Horticulture Week Custodian Award - Best Green Space/Infrastructure Strategy

Winner - Jon Sheaff & Associates for London Borough of Croydon Natural Capital Account


Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +

Parks & Gardens Live

Product showcase, kit demos, expert workshops and careers advice all on the schedule for gardens teams, parks managers and landscape maintenance professionals at Parks & Gardens Live 2019.

HW Custodian Awards

Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Products & Kit Resources

HORTICULTURE WEEK Custodian Awards

Find out more about the outstanding parks, gardens and arboricultural projects and teams that became our Custodian Award 2018 winners.