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  • Over half our priority species are thought to occur on road verges
  • Over 75% of councils we contacted cut their verges multiple times over spring and summer
  • Some of our rarest flowers, such as lizard orchid and spreading bellflower, can be found on road verges
  • There are just 85,000 hectares of flower-rich grassland left but about 238,000 hectares of road verge
  • Leaving cuttings to lie benefits plants like nettles, docks and coarse grasses
Alan Titchmarsh
The road verges near where I live have some really gorgeous displays of native flowers, such as bluebells, violets, stitchwort and orchids. But, like many parts of the country, they are sometimes being mown down in their prime, so depriving us of their beauty, wildlife of food and, in the end, unwittingly contributing to the eventual loss of the flowers altogether. We have lost 98% of our wildflower meadows; let's look after the slivers that are left. Alan Titchmarsh
Ellie Harrison
Roadside verges offer something of a double win. For those of us driving from one place to another, they're the consistent green frame mapping the way, more pleasing than hard grey edges. But for life along these borders, it's astonishingly undisturbed: unsprayed, untrodden and, unusual of many habitats these days, unbroken - a freeflow for seed dispersal, pollinators and beyond. Ellie Harrison - Countryfile

Take a look at some of the wonderful roadside scenes in our verge gallery...

Germaine Greer
A couple of miles down the road from my house a protected verge was destroyed when an industrial estate redeveloped into a 'research park', demanding a realignment of the road. Before the verge went under Tarmac its topsoil was removed and spread on a new site close by. The result is a sheltered fragment of chalk meadow where wild liquorice, greater knapweed and bird's-foot trefoil can be found. On the other side of the hedge, the new road verge has been repeatedly mown to a rough sward... Germaine Greer

Take a look at some of the wonderful roadside scenes in our verge gallery...

Being a British wildlife presenter who is constantly travelling up and down the country, I can't tell you how much it lifts me to see a road or motorway verge plastered with primroses in spring or orchids in summer. Our roadside verges must not be considered wasteland, but linear nature reserves which when all added together make the largest lowland meadow in Britain - a habitat which let's not forget is massively under threat. Often devoid of herbicide and insecticide, these wonderful but rarely visited places are so good for flowers that they end up being superb for attendant insects too, and come to think of it the kestrels favour these locations for a good reason as well... S.O.V I say, or Save Our Verges! Mike Dilger - The One Show
Sarah Raven
Doing flowers for my niece's wedding in the south Downs near Alfriston last year, we drove down to the sea on the Thursday evening to have a swim and I spotted a fantastic stand of Pyramidal orchids - over 100 in perfect nick. We did the same the following day, by which time a roadside flail had severed the tops of 3/4s of the group. Not one had ripe seed at that moment and so the reproducing potential of a fantastically beautiful wild flower was also almost severed. It made me want to cry! Sarah Raven