Speaking recently, the Chairman of the Amenity Forum, Professor John Moverley OBE, sought proper recognition by all sectors of government and opposition parties of the importance of amenity management.
He said ‘’What happens in amenity management impacts on everyone in the UK every day ensuring clean, healthy and sustainable amenity and sports surfaces fit for purpose. The current health crisis has brought to the fore just how important this work is and, throughout the lockdown, staff engaged in the sector have continued to ensure safe, clean streets and pavements, essential transport networks, parks safe for use and more. Amenity can often gain the status of a forgotten industry but it is essential and will be continue to be key to recovery over the months ahead’’
Defra are currently undertaking a review of the National Action Plan which sets regulations and targets for weed, pest and disease management in a professional setting. This work was previously led by a department within HSE. John emphasises that this increases the need for our voice to be heard as many new people are engaged in the process. John went on to say ‘’We have welcomed engagement in a number of consultations with Defra recently and will continue to provide active support. We recognise that often the focus is on agriculture but amenity is an essential element in all of this. Amenity management does not just happen but is undertaken by trained professionals using integrated approaches making use of all tools available to produce optimum results – safe, healthy, environmentally responsible and fit for purpose’’
The Forum is urging all engaged in the sector to get involved, speak to their MPs, councillors and other key stakeholders and to do it now.
John said ‘’The Forum has worked closely with all national governments over the last 10 years and is proud of its record both in helping achieve targets set and bringing the sector together to meet national objectives. The sector undertakes an essential role and is vital to the running of the nations of the UK’’
The Forum is holding its annual conference on October 15th in Northamptonshire where the theme will be ‘’Planning for the Future,’’ the event will also be open to online delegates.