Overgrown grass verges on major Chesterfield road are ‘accident waiting to happen’, says concerned motorist

Concerns have been raised that overgrown grass verges along a major Chesterfield road may cause a serious road collision.

Tuesday, 6th July 2021, 12:12 pm
Overgrown grass verges in the town. Pictured between Horns Bridge and the of the M1.
Overgrown grass verges in the town. Pictured between Horns Bridge and the of the M1.

One motorist raised their fears with the Derbyshire Times about the state of major roads across the town, particulary the A617 between Horns Bridge roundabout and junction 29 of the M1.

They told of their disbelief at how high the weeds and grass is currently growing, estimating it to be at least 4ft tall.

“I'm appalled with the council/ roads and byways that they have left this to happen to such a state that you can't see oncoming traffic, or see traffic thats coming round at the roundabout for overgrown grass unless your having to come out of junction slightly with your vehicle,” the concerned motorist said.

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Overgrown grass verges in the town. Pictured between Horns Bridge and the of the M1.

“I've never seen this problem as it is now, and surely needs looking into there's an accident waiting to happen.”

Chesterfield Borough Council cuts the majority of grass verges across the town on behalf of Derbyshire County Council.

However, it is Derbyshire County Council themselves that are responsible for the maintenance of some main roads such as the A61 and A617 dual carriageways.

A spokesperson for DCC said: “We carry out a maintenance programme on all our dual carriageway roads every summer, when the grass gets cut, drains emptied, litter picked and we fix any potholes or other defects.

“We will be doing the same this year however we have slightly delayed the programme so we are kinder to nature by letting the grass grow that bit longer and giving some native species longer to flower and seed.

"Many people want us not to mow verges at all, and we felt that by delaying the maintenance programme we would still be keeping road users safe, yet giving nature a chance.

“Maintenance on the A617 will start at the end of July.”

The authority has previously worked with partners such as Derbyshire Wildlife Trust and the Peak District National Park Authority to “identify wildlife rich verges which can be protected as road verge reserves (RVRs), and which can be managed to improve their wildlife value.”

It is reviewing its verge management across the county, to examine existing management regimes, look for possibilities to improve biodiversity and to explore the practical implications of such work.

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