Mr Austin was in Exeter on Wednesday to press the countys cabinet for financial support to enable the town council to take over the maintenance service. In March the county council withdrew nearly all of its grass and shrub bed maintenance as part of its Tough Choices savings programme But a Barny Army of volunteers was shocked recently when they were charged to dump their green waste after picking up the load left by the funding cuts. Mr Austin said he was shocked but not surprised to find that the large areas of grass and shrub beds across the County Hall site were in pristine condition. The contrast with Barnstaple was stark, he said. I can quite understand the county councils desire to create a good impression with its visitors, but their service reductions in Barnstaple mean that the town is not afforded the same opportunity. Mr Austin said he hoped to finish the job after a positive start to the campaign and asked cabinet members to hand over the money it spends on Barnstaple to the town council. Councillor Roger Croad told Mr Austin: The council has a wide range of delivery models in place for grass cutting, with the district, town and parish councils cutting in some areas. Officers will be happy to work with the town council on this basis and will happily advise them on the most cost effective solutions for grass waste through discussions with the neighbourhood highway team.