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ECC - Essex Highways prioritises roadside safety and wildflower conservation this grass-cutting season

Essex Highways is working with partners to conserve vital wildflower species in verges across 90 locations in the county.

Where it is safe to do so, certain roadside verges will be left uncut throughout May until late June.

These provide sanctuary for nationally scarce wildlife species such as Sulphar Clover, Lesser Calamint, and Crested Cow Wheat.

Essex Highways is working with Essex County Council's arboriculture team to identify special roadside verges, with approximately 40 miles of road verges across Essex recognised as beneficial for wildflowers.

It is also hoped it will encourage more people to choose active travel so they can enjoy the wildflowers on their journeys.

For the remaining verges, the yearly mowing works will begin this month as Essex Highways rolls out a targeted grass-cutting strategy to enhance safety by improving visibility on roads and junctions.

Grass within a metre from road edges will be trimmed to ensure clear sight lines, allowing for safer navigation this summer.

Councillor Tom Cunningham, Cabinet Member for Highways, Infrastructure and Sustainable Transport at Essex County Council, said: “While the safety and visibility of Essex’s roads is of paramount importance, it’s wonderful we’ve been able to identify verges across Essex that can be left to grow during the spring to conserve wildflower species.”

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