It’s obviously a pure coincidence, but Vale of Glamorgan parks staff have been out in force in the last 24 hours carrying out planting on the Penarth’s iconic Clock Roundabout – just a week ahead of the council elections on May 4th.
Last year the Vale Council hadn’t bothered about the roundabout at all, and had left it as bare barren ground – despite angry local residents pointing out that the town has always had a time-honoured tradition of attractive floral displays there throughout the summer.
Some local residents got so fed-up with the sight of scorched earth – and with the Labour-controlled Vale Council’s limp excuses – (the limpest being that they had to wait until sockets had been put in place for the December Christmas tree display) – local amateur gardeners took matters into their own hands and covertly planted marigolds there.
In no time at all the Vale Council teams came back to mascerate the rogue marigolds and spray weedkiller on the soil to deter any other unauthorised plants which might dare to poke their heads above ground.
However now, with local elections looming ever closer, the climate has evidently changed and no fewer than 6 council gardeners have been at work getting some urgent planting done.
The policy now is to move away from installing traditional bedding displays to planting wildflowers and herbaceous plants instead – which need relatively little attention.
Meanwhile in Alexandra Park there is a striking display of colourful blue flowers in every one of the four main flower beds at the park entrance .
A council staff member , who did not want to be named, said the colour chosen was “strictly apolitical” .