PROUD residents in Greenock's east end have hit out at housing bosses for the state of communal land on their doorsteps.

Home owners in Belville Street say they have cared for the surrounding areas for decades, helping to keep them tidy and weed-free.

But now many of them are no longer fit to do it themselves and the land has been left untouched.

Councillor Colin Jackson today called on Inverclyde's largest social landlord, River Clyde Homes, to keep its promises to the community and clean up the area.

Margaret Collins, 76, who has lived in Belville Street for 53 years, said: "I have stayed here for 51 years and some folk have lived here for longer than that.

"We have kept it nice but we are not fit to do it anymore.

"Some of us used to keep all the weeds away when our kids were growing up.

"It was a nice place to stay but look at it now.

"We just want them to look after it.

"It has never been in this state before." Neighbour Elizabeth McAlees, 45, has stayed in Belville Street for 25 years and sufferers from severe arthritis.

She said: "It is terrible the state of the place now."

Those who have lived side by side since the houses were built say that some of the areas running along Belville Street behind the flats are effectively turning into waste grounds.

Margaret added: "It is unacceptable."

Councillor Jackson said: "Many of the residents living here are elderly.

"I am really concerned about the grass cutting and the general maintenance here and in other places.

"I am inundated with people who are concerned about it but you are just met with silence by River Clyde Homes.

"People living in these houses were promised by River Clyde Homes that it would be sorted.

"But they say they haven't been here all year and now it's the end of August.

"The residents did their bit and River Clyde Homes has to as well."

Bosses at RCH say they carried out a tidy-up last week and are willing to draw up a programme of maintenance but this depends on the householders helping to foot the bill.

A River Clyde Home spokesman said: “There are a large number of homeowners in the Belville area who have shared responsibility, along with River Clyde Homes, for the maintenance of all common ground areas.

“As a good neighbour we have historically maintained the area and have just once again treated the paved areas to kill the weeds and enhance the appearance of the neighbourhood.

“In the future we are happy to facilitate such maintenance works to take place on the basis of all the owners coming together with us, agreeing a level of works and making their financial contribution to the costs, as per the conditions of their title deeds.”