A WEED-ridden wasteland is being transformed after locals decided to dig in themselves making use of recycled plants from roundabouts in the town.

Northallerton’s underpass used to be a picturesque area of the community planted and looked after by the town council through payments from North Yorkshire county council.

But in the face of budget reductions the money was cut and the area became an eyesore made worse by graffiti and neglect on the underpass.

Now North Yorkshire county councillor for Northallerton’s Romanby and Broomfield area David Blades and resident Shirley Bell have rolled up their sleeves and are in the process of digging in to renovate the area.

Cllr Blades said: "With other things taking precedence the area became overgrown and there have been problems on the underpass with graffiti and dirt.

"That has been cleaned up and now we are starting on the weeding and planting on the bank side.

"There were a lot of complaints from people concerned about the state of the area, so we are trying to do something about it.

"I enjoy weeding and Shirley is a keen gardener so we are working together."

The councillor asked Northallerton Town Council which looks after the roundabouts and other areas of the town for the go ahead to recycle plants which can be used as perennials such as hyacinths and polyanthus and which are taken out during replanting in the spring.

"The request was agreed by members."

He added: "I just thought it would be a good idea to recycle some of these plants which can be replanted for next year, it is a two year scheme to try and transform the area."

They’re also hoping over the year to get youngsters from Northallerton School and Sixth Form College involved in helping to plant up to a thousand spring bulbs using money from councillor Blade’s locality budget which makes money available to promote the social, economic or environmental wellbeing of communities.

"There used to be quite a display around this area and although it is quite a task we want to enhance this part of the town, it is a very busy area used by a lot of people, many going to the library or walking into town so it will be a boost to have it looking nice." said Cllr Blades.