Council plans to ‘promote biodiversity’ by not cutting the grass are really due to ‘cut backs’, it’s been claimed.

Irvine’s community councillors discussed areas being left overgrown at their August meeting, after we previously reported residents calling North Ayrshire Council “lazy” for “cutting corners”.

Trying to keep a straight face, Chair Tristan Lindsay said: “I was bemused to read about certain areas that are all overgrown, needing attention, weeded and trimmed.

“It was brilliant the way Cllr Jim Montgomerie responded, I laughed quite a lot when I read it. They’ve left all these areas like wildernesses and then he says ‘it’s really about biodiversity’ and we can breed rare butterflies or there might be a rare slug that’s a bit unusual.

“It’s nothing to do with that. It’s about cutbacks as they’ve got no money.”

Cabinet Member for Place Cllr Jim Montgomerie previously said: “We hope it will let wild flowers grow in their natural environment and therefore let associated wildlife flourish and thrive in their natural environment.

“Some of the areas we are letting grow are a vital haven for many bees, butterflies, birds, bats and bugs. This approach was widely supported during our engagement exercises.”