With the downturn in our economy and the drastic effect it has on our local councils’s ability to spend, some departments suffer more than others.
So it is with those ones that are viewed as, well, less vital…such as parks, gardens and community spaces.
That can have far reaching consequences for those who work in them, or simply love and enjoy them.
…one of those cost-cutting consequences also has, what I personally consider, to be an UP side.
Most of us can remember those immaculately laid out bedding plants that filled our park borders and beds with a riotous kaleidoscope.
Indeed, some of our local gardens still do go down this more formal route, such as Greenhill, which many consider to be be the flagship gardens of the borough.
Being slap bang on the Esplanade, it is in a prominent position for all to see, Jo public passes it every day, visiting tourists enjoy its grounds in the summer months.
Brightly coloured Begonias, Tagettes and Pelargoniums, cheerfully decorated foliage of Coleus and the almost impossible to pronounce Hypoestese.
Each season, old plants are ripped out and disposed of and new ones tucked in in their place.
Time consuming, labour intensive not to mention somewhat expensive, and a few might say wasteful.
However, nowadays, many gardens are trending towards more naturalistic beds and borders, planted up with perennials and mulched to keep those infernal weeds at bay.
Radipole gardens comes into this catagory.
Does that make them any less precious or lovable?
They have a grace and beauty all of their own, I always refer to them as the Cinderella gardens, they may be tucked away in the metaphorical kitchens, but their beauty still shines through.
Plus they have the advantage of being more wildlife friendly, which can only be to the good for us all.
So, youz pays your money and youz makes your choice.
Prim and Proper or Wild and Woolly?
Why not both?
(Photos Helen Taylor, Michael Kelly and Jim Perkins from the Face Book Page.)