The management of Dorset's highway verge is delivered by our Greenspace Service and is divided into two distinct programmes:

  • rural – for roads with speed limits of 40mph and above
  • urban areas – for roads with speed limits of 30mph and below

Rural areas

The rural cutting programme covers all verges on roads above 40mph. The total length of rural roads being cut in Dorset is 2691km (1,672 miles):

A roads – 319 km (198 miles)

B roads – 289 km (180 miles)

C roads – 1025 km (637 miles)

D roads – 1058 km (657 miles)

A and B class roads are cut twice a year. C and D class roads are cut once a year.

Junctions and visibility splays are cut regularly throughout the year, both by contractors as part of the scheduled cuts and ‘as needed’ by our in-house teams.

Where required, we will undertake additional cutting anywhere on the network later in the season, to ensure safe passage along the highway.

Rural verge cutting schedule:

A & B roads (cut twice)

Cut 1: May to June
Cut 2: Aug to Sept

C & D roads (cut once)

Cut 1: June to August

Dual carriageways

A352 & A30: May
A35 & A338: June
A352 & A30: September

Conservation verges (cut once)

Cut 1: August

View a map of the rural verge cutting schedule on Dorset Explorer.  

Urban areas

The urban cutting programme covers all verges on roads within or below the 30mph zones.

Urban verge cutting schedule

How often we cut these verges depends on the method we are using. The methods are:

  • Cut & drop: In areas where verges are cut and the grass clippings are left to decompose in to the soil, 7 cuts will take place from May through to November
  • Cut & collect: In areas where verges are cut and grass clippings are collected and removed, verges are cut twice a year between April and October.

Urban verges are mostly cut by our in-house teams, but some are cut by local agreements with town or parish councils. We currently have agreements in place with the following organisations:

Verge cutting contacts (urban areas)
Organisation Email Telephone
Bourton Parish Council 07702 709557
Bridport Town Council 01308 456722
Dorchester Town Council 01305 266861
Gillingham Town Council

01747 823588
01305 221215

Shaftesbury Town Council 01747 852420
Sherborne Town Council 01935 812807
Sturminster Newton Town Council 01258 475136

Weed control

Control of weeds on highway hard services, e.g. kerb edges, is done with a biodegradable herbicide. This work is carried out once or twice a year during the growing season (May to October). This helps reduce weeds and maintain the integrity of Highway infrastructure.

View where urban sealed surface spraying will be taking place.

Public involvement

Please note it is dangerous to maintain verges, and members of the public should avoid doing it themselves. However, if you or a group are interested in performing maintenance tasks in your community, then please email our Countryside and Greenspace service.

Report a verge cutting problem

Countryside and Greenspace Service

Full contact details