Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Road Verge Campaign: The Cutting Edge update

Its always heart-warming to log on to good news. So thank you Liz Anderson for the following message and photograph posted on our Facebook page:

This is a fabulous example of Central Beds. Road Verge Nature Reserves - such an improvement on last years cutting regime they look fantastic and deserve a well done:

We can't help but agree.

We've also received praise for Isle of Wight Council and South Derbyshire District Council. And there was also this lovely tweet from Carl Cornish:

@cornishca: @Love_plants Photo of common spotted orchids on Notified Road Verge at Eaton Wood, Notts:

Alas, according to Steve James, all was not well elsewhere in Nottinghamshire:

@stevejamesPCC: Upper Broughton's top green planted as a wildflower meadow in 2000 was strimmed completely Saturday morning.

And it was happening on the road verges too:

Now this is not to take away from the good work that is evidently being done at Eaton Wood Notified Road Verge. But it does beg the question: should a road verge have to be designated as "Notified" or a reserve in order for it to be managed with a bit more care for our wildlife? Please let us know your thoughts in the Comments below.

Elsewhere we received complaints about Leeds and Worcestershire County Councils:

@WildlifeofLeeds: @Love_plants @leedscc mowing down 1000s of meadow buttercups right now on Roundhay Ring Road

@Blacklaceknits: @Love_plants lovely wild verges along A456 being mown to ground level by Worcestershire County Council. Very disappointing.

And some more "Before and After" images to add to our Gallery of Shame: 

Susie Clark on Facebook: I am currently staying in Staffordshire and on way to Fradley South shops from Fradley village witnessed the decimation of a wildflower meadow into a green flattened area.



But let's end on a more positive note. We received the following image from Charlie Bloom, of a wild flower garden she created to raise awareness of our meadow and road verge flora. It won the RHS Bronze Medal winning Show Garden at BBC Gardeners World Live.


Let's hope the message is getting through. As always you can sign the petition and rate your council on the campaign homepage.


  1. Keep up the good work! let's bombard the short grass and double, sterile flower brigade!

  2. Just seen wide verges and centre reserve needlessly cut on the A453 on the approach to Wrexham from Chester. This contrasts markedly with the wonderful centre reserve on the A55 approach to the junction with the same road.

  3. Nottinghamshire - the Notified Road Verges are important for scarce plants and as my photo shows, can look fantastic. Sadly that scheme has faced funding cuts. Elsewhere much can be improved - does the public really prefer seeing cut grass with mats of arisings? Councils react to critism and there's been quite a bit in local media of complaints about grass not being cut. People should email/write to the council to say they'd prefer to see verges managed for wild flowers, as with your campaign (still not a response to my email sent to Notts County Council). Keep up the good work with this excellent campaign.

  4. Where was the praise for the Isle of Wight for?
    When I moved here in 1997 I looked forward to seeing pyramidal orchids every year on the road between Ventnor and Whitwell, but then the contractors kept cutting the verge too early, and for several years now I haven't seen any pyramidal orchids along it.

  5. I have just read alan titchmarshs ariticle in amateur gardening magazine, perhaps alan resides on a straight road, but where i live in buckinghamshire there are plenty of corners which makes it very dangerous for motorists and will cause a lot of accidents especially when the cow parsley grows

  6. Hi Anonymous - where there are safety issues we would, of course, not object to the verge being cut. For a full statement of our position on this please take a look at the second answer on this page: http://www.plantlife.org.uk/roadvergecampaign/faqs .