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GLA berates councils which let green spaces run to ruin

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The Greater London Authority has attacked three London councils for neglecting their green spaces, areas viewed as essential if Ken Livingstone succeeds in getting more key buildings built.

The London Assembly has formed a Green Spaces Investigative Committee, which has just taken a hard look at three boroughs in particular - Islington, Hackney and Tower Hamlets. It looked at development plans, conservation threats, community safety issues and wildlife enhancement plans for spaces in the authorities' areas, but found that there was 'a clear need for financial investment and ongoing maintenance by the local councils' and that need was often being ignored.

Chair of the committee Roger Evans said: 'The mayor's plans to increase the number of building developments in London means it is essential to preserve all available green spaces. During the visits we saw some flagship parks, but many of the smaller patches of green spaces are severely neglected with increasing litter, vandalism and dogs'mess. If the upkeep of these parks is not sufficiently maintained, they will not be used by the local residents, which will result in this space being wasted and subjected to misuse.'

The committee members singled out Caledonian Park in Islington as heavily littered and unsafe and Hackney's Daubeney Green and Hackney Marshes as poorly managed and funded.

The committee is due to publish its findings from the visits in a report later this year.

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