Maintenance of grass verges

Grass verges are the responsibility of Gloucestershire County Council.

In Cheltenham, the verges are maintained by Ubico, the council's environmental service provider, under an agreement with the county council.

The county council pay the borough council a contribution for five cuts per year.

The borough council has agreed to fund an additional number of cuts per year to maintain a good standard across the borough.

What residents can expect

  • Grass verges are cut every three weeks, where possible, during the growing season - usually between March and October, depending on weather conditions
  • Cut grass is generally removed from the pavement at the time the grass is cut
  • Strimming takes place around benches, trees and other obstacles early in the growing season and then herbicide is applied around obstacles in April/May to prevent weed or grass growth
  • Clippings will be left on the grass verge
  • Where bulbs are planted, the grass will not be cut until the bulb foliage has died back and this is usually six to eight weeks after flowering
  • Where wild flower planting has taken place, the grass will be left uncut for the duration of the season, normally until around late September to early October. All foliage will be removed from the site
  • In periods of warm, wet weather grass may grow vigorously and following cutting the clippings are likely to clump and take longer to dissipate

Where appropriate - and in consultation with residents - we will consider promoting biodiversity with longer grass and wild flowers.

To further support biodiversity, after the one annual weed spray, we will continue to carry out maintenance of soft green growth (weeds or long grass) around the base of trees in grass verges, but we will leave such growth to grow longer where appropriate by up to half a metre radial spread around the base of the tree trunk with an annual careful cut towards the end of the growing season.

It is hoped that this will:

  1. encourage wildlife around tree bases
  2. reduce water evaporation thus enabling more water available to tree roots
  3. reduce the incidence of mower/strimmer damage to tree roots, trunks, and low canopy branches
  4. reduce the requirement to use herbicides