Frustration over 'impassable' paths in suburb as hedges get out of hand

Bowthorpe campaigner Jon Watson has highlighted overgrown hedges and trees in the village.

Bowthorpe campaigner Jon Watson has highlighted overgrown hedges and trees in the village. - Credit: Victoria Pertusa

Overgrown trees and hedges are making paths "impassable" for people with pushchairs and in wheelchairs in a Norwich suburb, a campaigner has said.

Complaints have been made about overgrowth "from all over Bowthorpe", according to campaigner Jon Watson, as he pushed Norfolk County Council to give it the chop.

The biggest issue, he said, is the hedge line next to the pavement along Clover Hill Road, between the junctions with Rawley Road and Wendene.

Bowthorpe campaigner Jon Watson has highlighted overgrown hedges and trees in the village.

Bowthorpe campaigner Jon Watson has highlighted overgrown hedges and trees in the village. - Credit: Victoria Pertusa

"This has become so overgrown it's impassable for some people who suffer mobility issues or have a pushchair for their children," he said.

"I haven't got a problem with rewilding at all. It attracts wildlife and that's great – I love to see the birds outside and other wildlife.


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"It's when it causes an obstruction and a danger that something needs doing about it."

A spokesperson for Norfolk County Council said: "We are aware that access along some public pavements in Bowthorpe is being restricted by overgrown vegetation.

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"We are arranging for this to be cut back where the plant is growing from highways authority land.

"We will also be asking local property owners who have trees and bushes that sit next to the public highway to ensure that they are cut back to avoid them causing an obstruction, which is particularly important at this time of year."

Bowthorpe campaigner Jon Watson has highlighted overgrown hedges and trees in the village.

Bowthorpe campaigner Jon Watson has highlighted overgrown hedges and trees in the village. - Credit: Victoria Pertusa

Mr Watson welcomed the council's commitment to addressing the issue, but pointed out no timescale had been specified.

"How long will that take? When I checked they had had four different reports – one of which had been open for more than a month."

It an example of a problem which can be found all over the village, Mr Watson added.

A path on Clover Hill Road in Bowthorpe, which campaigner Jon Watson says is 'impassable' to some people.

A path on Clover Hill Road in Bowthorpe, which campaigner Jon Watson says is 'impassable' to some people with pushchairs or who have mobility issues. - Credit: Jon Watson

"The size of some of the trees, for example, is ridiculous – they're way too big for this area. But the council refers to its tree policy which says they can't do much unless it's a danger to somebody or it's diseased.

"Some people will say they will go out and do it themselves, but that then presents a legal problem that they could get into trouble for. But it shows how frustrated people are."

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