Local authorities have firmly repeated their warning to an environmental activist that she cannot create a community garden on council property without permission.
Diane Hunt, 57, received a warning letter from East Kent Housing after she began to lay soil for plants on a grassy bank outside her flat in Long Meadow Way on the Hales Place Estate.
She triggered a furious social media debate after protesting that she had merely wanted to do something to lift a corner of the estate.
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Ms Hunt added that she believed she had been acting in the spirit of Canterbury City Council’s Love Where You Live campaign.
But council spokesman Leo Whitlock said: “One of the major themes of the Love Where We Live campaign is respecting other people’s property.
“Just as we expect people not to daub graffiti across someone’s home or business premises, we expect them not to dig up someone else’s grass on a whim and without permission no matter how well intentioned their motives might be.
“We are always open to ideas about how to improve the district. People just have to come and talk to us or East Kent Housing first.”
Ms Hunt wanted to create a community garden bearing fruits like strawberries and herbs on it – and has the backing of neighbours.
East Kent Housing added: “While we appreciate the motives, this is a communal area which is for the benefit of all residents.
“Some residents have told us they do not want an environmental area in front of their homes although they might not want to say this in person to a passionate and enthusiastic environmental campaigner.
“Their views need to be respected as should the fact that this land does not belong to Ms Hunt. We are always open to discussing new ideas about improving where people live, but we need to balance the wishes of everyone affected.”
East Kent Housing has warned Ms Hunt that she must remove the garden or she will be ordered to pay for its removal.