Prevention is better than cure

At a recent meeting of the Amenity Forum, Chris Faulkner of Kersten (UK) Limited spoke about the need for all involved in weed management in the sector to further increase the focus on weed prevention. He said ‘’A common theme of the conversations we have with customers centre around removing, killing or controlling a weed that already exists. Prevention requires us to think about the causes of weeds on a particular surface and how we can make the environment as inhospitable for weeds as possible’’


In a recent presentation at a conference in Wales, the Independent Forum Chairman John Moverley, said ‘’prevention certainly on hard surfaces begins with the design of our environment. For example, designing the corner of a kerb with a nice wide radius, rather than a sharp corner allows a sweeper to easily follow the edge of the kerb and collect any detritus trapped there’’


Also at the conference, a representative from Newport Council commented about their success with improved preventative maintenance work. He said ‘’we have been using mechanical weed removal to minimise the soil build-up over winter and the team has seen a big reduction in the amount of weeds coming up in the spring. This has resulted in the diminished use of plant protection products around Newport’’


The amenity sector has been at the fore front of the development of integrated weed management and produces comprehensive guidance notes for the sector. It is important to recognise that integrated means choosing the right approach and choice of methods for weed management including plant protection products. The increased emphasis on moving to carbon zero also will significant impact on future approaches.


A new guidance note on weed prevention will shortly be available on the Amenity Forum website  and it will be just one of the topics to be addressed in Updating events across the UK organised by the Forum in early 2022. For more information contact

Notes to Editors

The Amenity Forum is the non-profit making voluntary initiative and the independent body bringing together professional organisations with an involvement in the amenity horticulture sector. This is a very diverse industry responsible for the landscape management of urban areas, highways and rail network, sports grounds, parks, industrial and utility sites. To establish and maintain these areas to a high standard, the sector requires access to pesticides, efficient equipment and trained and qualified staff. The organisation was formed in October 2003 as a key action to support the Voluntary Initiative, an industry led project agreed with Government to reduce the environmental impact of pesticides.

The membership comprises of organisations from across this diverse industry, covering manufacturers, suppliers, trade associations, local authorities, major users, landscape, sport and leisure. Equally important are those members who represent training and qualification standards. The key Government agencies have an important observer role. The objectives of the Amenity Forum are:

To promote and encourage proper and responsible use of pesticides and integrated methods for the control of pests, weeds and diseases

To lead, coordinate and encourage achievement of “Best Practice” objectives in weed, pest & disease management

To ensure that all practices are sustainable and protect the environment with minimised risks to public health.

To run a communication programme to support these aims and to promote the image of the sector among stakeholders and the public.

To coordinate and encourage the establishment of sustainable qualifications, training and CPD activity, specifically for the Amenity sector

To organise activities within the Amenity Forum membership and linked organisations, such that Amenity Forum objectives are developed in a coordinated way

For further information on this press release or the work of the Forum, please contact the Secretary, Kate Hopkins, or the Chairman, Professor John Moverley OBE. Similarly, if you wish to register for future press releases, please let us know. or email