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Plantlife’s campaign to protect wildflowers and nature on roadside verges

Plantlife’s campaign to protect wildflowers and nature on roadside verges

Posted May 14 2018

The 2018 campaign to get road verges managed better for nature has kicked off!

Already the word is getting out: you might have seen us featured on the BBC, in the Times, in the Telegraph and in the Daily Mail. If you've not yet signed the petition, please do - every signature really does count, especially on a local level as we've had councils asking how many of their citizens have been supporting the campaign. 

You can read what it's all about here and why we believe drivers' safety won't be compromised. Together we can change the way our roadsides are managed better for nature. 


We want road verges
managed better for nature

Rural road verges are a vital refuge for wild flowers driven out of our farmland. In turn, wild flowers support our birds, bees and other wildlife. Some councils are looking after their road verges in a way that benefits nature, but they are in a minority. We want to see all road verges managed better while remaining safe for motorists. Not only can it be done - it could save money as well.

Please sign our letter to councils asking them to adopt our guidelines


Our open letter

Dear Sir/Madam

Please adopt Plantlife's guidelines for managing road verges to benefit wild flowers and other nature. I know that road verges are under considerable pressure. Priorities for safety and access, along with budget constraints and difficulties with the collection of litter and grass clippings can mean that enhancing their wildlife value is often low on the list. But we believe that the adoption of a few basic principles will improve our verges for nature, bringing benefits for wildlife, for us and for future generations.

Yours faithfully,

Someone who cares about wildlife on our verges


Sign here

3 easy steps to sign our letter

  1. Find your council via the fields below*
  2. Enter your name and email address
  3. Click "Submit"

* This council may not be your local district or borough council – see "Trouble finding your council?" for the reason below.


Trouble finding your council: When it comes to road verge management, not all Councils are equal. In your area you will have one that has been designated the Highway Authority. Often this will be a County or City Council. They may delegate the work – for example, to your Parish Council or to local contractors – but as the Council with legal responsibility for looking after your roads “the buck stops with them.” These are the Councils listed above and those we need to persuade.

Your Address (optional)

If you give us your address, we’ll be able to send you information about nature on Road Verges and wildflowers and plants more generally, to help you enjoy them even more.


Your Phone Number (optional)

If you give us your phone number, we’ll be able to contact you to check whether you think your Council is doing more nature and ask about your interest in wildflowers so we can provide more information.



We promise that we’ll never pass your details onto anyone else and you can opt out of receiving information from us at any time - click here to check our privacy statement.

Health & Safety

Safety must come first on our roads but with the size of most road verges there should be no conflict between this and conservation. For many verges a regular annual late summer cut and removal of mowings will keep the verge open, safe and thriving with interesting wildlife. We also agree that certain verges must be cut regularly cut to maintain clear lines of visibility – this is particularly crucial at junctions where a ‘visibility splay’ has to be maintained at all times. On some busy roads this also applies to the first metre from the edge of the carriageway.

Easy Ways to Help