FEARS have been raised that Newquay’s appearance will be ruined after councillors decided to stop spraying the town’s weeds.

Newquay Town Council’s environment and facilities committee has recommended to stop the spraying of glyphosate on where the highways meet kerbs.

Councillors decided against using the substance as it is “probably carcinogenic” but others believe it is a “reckless” move that will lead to uncontrolled weed growth.

The town full council will need to rubber-stamp the recommendation, which is part of a new plan to increase biodiversity in Newquay, before it comes into force.

Councillor Katie Larsen, the new chair of the environment and facilities committee, who has drawn up the new biodiversity policy, is exploring alternative options to using glyphosate with new vice chair Steve Slade, which includes manual and mechanical weeding and burning.

The new policy does not include verges, which is the responsibility of Cornwall Council.

Councillor Olly Monk said: “I was dismayed by the decision of the Newquay Town Council Green councillors to stop spraying the weeds on Newquay's highways and adjoining pavements.

“Since 2016 Newquay Town Council has  successfully controlled the weeds on over 100 miles of highways and footpaths across Newquay.

“This reckless move will see uncontrolled weed growth across our town with no alternative management  scheme put in place.

“I fear the Green Party councillors who voted this through are abandoning the appearance of the town to suit their own philosophy.

“This move was made despite the town council officers stating that there wasn't the capacity in the town council to manage the weeds and no contractor had ever previously bid to manage the weeds manually.

“I really fear that the town’s appearance is going backwards and will affect the pride that residents have in our town.”

Cllr Slade said: “We are looking to find a glyphosate free solution to this year’s highway weed control.

“As the World Health Organisation has decided glyphosate is ‘probably’ carcinogenic, we decided to not risk the health of the people of Newquay, or damage our wildlife by continuing to spray this chemical.

“What’s has been bad in the past is the public were not informed when the spraying took place, so they could avoid it, for example when taking kids to school or walking the dog.”