THE 'depressing' state of street furniture has prompted a call to action after the issue was brought to Cheadle Town Council.
Peeling paintwork and rotten bench slats were highlighted as issues around the town centre at a meeting of Team Cheadle last week.
Now councillors for the town are set to find out who is responsible for maintenance of street furniture and attempt to rectify the situation.
Chairman of Team Cheadle, Ivan Wozniak, addressed councillors during the public participation section of the full council meeting on Monday, September 17.
He said: “One of the things raised at out meetings is the state of the street furniture, particularly in Greyhound Walk and near the Millennium Sphere.
“A lot of the paintwork seems to have been partly vandalised and the woodwork on some of the benches is partially missing.
“We are surprised it hasn’t been maintained in the way street furniture should be.
“It was part of the ‘better welcome’ project completed eight years ago. It looked fantastic when it was completed. To see it now in the state it’s in is really very depressing.”
The ‘better welcome’ scheme aimed to make Cheadle more welcoming to residents and visitors. One aspect of the project was to rebrand street furniture in red and gold paint to echo the signature colours used in Pugin’s Gem, St Giles RC Church along with new gateway signage and history trail signs.
Team Cheadle appealed to Cheadle Town Council to back their appeal to Staffordshire Moorlands District Council (SMDC) to rejuvenate and maintain the street furniture.
Town council member Gary Bentley said: “I went to Leek and it was lovely – was just going to ask can we find out what the difference is?
“Nobody seems to know who is in charge of what. Something’s not quite right, because everywhere else gets done.”
Technically, because the matter was raised during the public session, under the council’s own procedure it could not be discussed or acted upon.
However, members agreed to scrutinise that policy at a future meeting.
Cllr Stephen Ellis said: “We seem to be having the same issues at public participation, it’s either a debate or it isn’t.
“We really need to review the procedures. We need to look at tightening this up.”
The council agreed to write to SMDC raising the concerns as well as asking district councillors for Cheadle to find out the relevant department to discuss the matter with.
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