Should we concern ourselves with the little monuments we pass every day? I refer to the fingerposts, the milestones, the ancient stone structures and Cheshire railings that seem to belong to nobody and unloved and neglected they rust away as the years pass. I believe that they are remnants of the way we were and of the lives our grandparents lived and they should be cared for and preserved and this happens best when local people take pride and ownership.
Currently there are lovely examples of what can be done in and around Tarporley. Local volunteers have taken it upon themselves to care for the ancient milestone on Tarporley High Street. In Eaton the Parish Council have restored and repainted a fingerpost and transformed the neglected County Council picnic site and created a wildlife and wildflower preserve enjoyed by local resident, school groups and visitors. Utkinton and Cotebrook Parish Council are now the owners of a fingerpost. All these once neglected assets are now greatly improved and enhance our area. This is the way ahead but progress can be terribly slow which is why I will be asking the following question at the next meeting of Cheshire West and Chester Council.
“Parish Councils in my ward have asked whether they can relieve this Council of the responsibility for, and cost of, various minor assets.
They want, for example, to repair and repurpose a redundant and crumbling public lavatory in Tarporley, to plant a community orchard on land that has no other purpose or benefit and to repair and maintain heritage assets such as ancient mile markers and finger posts that are becoming rusting eyesores.
There seems to be interminable delays to decisions to pass these items to outside bodies that will relieve this body of costs and enhance the borough. I would like to invite you to see the assets in question and also show you some of the marvellous use that volunteers have made to previously valueless things.
Please could the relevant cabinet member address this issue without delay?”