Cadbury Heath resident contacts council 30 times over hedge that blocks light to her and her neighbours’ homes

Amanda Sharpe-Machin and her mum Jill who lives next door

A Cadbury Heath resident says she has contacted South Gloucestershire Council 30 times since May 2018 about a high hedge that is blocking light into a row of bungalows.

Amanda Sharpe-Machin, of Brereton Way, decided to contact The Week In to highlight the problem as she is and her neighbours are fed up of having to keep the lights on in their homes during the day, especially with the rising cost of fuel bills.

Amanda also says that if the height is reduced, she and her neighbours will be able to enjoy the lovely view on the other side of the hedge across the old Warmley pitch and putt course as residents used to to be able to do.

Amanda, her mother Jill Nicholson who lives next door, and another neighbour Verna Lines, are all unhappy that the council has not, despite repeated requests, properly cut back the hedge that dominates their homes and small rear gardens and makes them feel claustrophobic.

\When the hedge was lower, some years back

Amanda did not move to Brereton Way until September 2019 and complained initially to the council on her mum’s behalf. She says that when work has been carried out by the council, the hedge has only been skimmed. Workers last came out in June of this year but only cut as high as they could reach on foot.

The residents would like to see the wire fence lowered as well as the hedge as they say it does not need to be as high as it was when there was a golf course on the other side and balls were flying around.

Council leader Toby Savage and local councillor Sam Bromiley visited Brereton Way last month and Amanda was initially told that a cherry picker would be sent out to lower the hedge within two weeks. She said that was then changed to October, with the delay blamed on the nesting season.

But neither Amanda nor her neighbours are convinced that the work will actually take place so contacted us.

Amanda on the old golf course which she cannot see from her home because of the high hedge 

We approached the council and this week a spokesperson told us: “Whilst we are unable to cut back the hedge during nesting or growing season in order to protect wildlife and the underlying health of the plant, we have discussed the matter at length with residents and have informed them that we would be returning in October to trim the height, having already trimmed the sides to clear the pathway.”

Cllr Sam Bromiley, who represents the Parkwall & Warmley ward, said: “Having seen the issues being faced by residents first hand from their perspective after standing in Ms Sharpe-Machin’s back garden and speaking to several other residents along the road, I completely agree that something needs to be done and have pressed the council for action at the earliest possible opportunity.

“I am pleased that council officers have agreed to return in October and I will be keeping in touch with them over the coming weeks to ensure that this timescale is met.”