Midlothian Council have added eight new Ransomes Parkway 3 cylinder mowers to their grounds maintenance fleet, purchased from local dealer Fairways GM.
Justin Venton, Land and Countryside Manager at Scotland's second smallest local authority said,
"Our remit in the Land and Countryside Service is to develop new greenspace projects and manage and maintain the public and private green spaces throughout Midlothian for the benefit of our residents and visitors to the area. To do this in cost-effective manner we have to have equipment that we can rely on; to get the job done, whatever the circumstances. The manner in which we go about the task is evident in that we currently have three parks with the prestigious Green Flag Award - Roslin Glen, Vogrie Country Park and Springfield Mill.
"We listen and consult with our staff in regards to machinery preference and they are the principal specifiers when we are looking to upgrade our equipment. In this case, the Parkway 3 with its 33 hp diesel engine and heavy duty Magna cutting cylinders proved to be their preferred option. The operator ergonomics were a factor as it has a fully adjustable control pod in the armrest for precise finger-tip control; push-button weight transfer and a comfortable suspension seat with adjustable back rest and lumbar support. I must also mention the service we get from our local dealer, Fairways; it is of the highest order and is a contributory factor why we have continued to purchase Ransomes equipment.
"Midlothian has retained cylinder grass cutting to maintain high aesthetic standards and because we are concerned that a change to rotary mowing might lead to a drop in standards. This result could be more cutting cycles, which might increase the cost of opur maintenance regime."
Jim Ferguson is a foreman in Area East, which includes Kings Park in Dalkeith, where they have been using Ransomes equipment for the past 30 years. Unlike some local authorities they have not reduced cutting cycles.
"In fact, we are cutting just as regularly," he said, "and like to maintain the grass at less than 20 mm, where possible. Our residents are proud of their open spaces and like them to be presented at a high standard, at all times and these Ransomes mowers certainly help us achieve this."