Ragwort Control

Richard Egis made this Freedom of Information request to Highways Agency

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was successful.

Dear Highways Agency,

I travel the full length of the M3 and M4 twice a week and I have noticed a big increase in ragwort in the verges over the last few years. This year it has been particularly prolific (for example between the Reading Junctions 11 and 10 on the M4 and on the M3 between Basingstoke and Winchester) and it looks like it is spreading into nearby fields. My understanding of this particular plant is that, although it is a native plant, without proper management it can become extremely poisononus if eaten by cattle (especially horses). I understand the Highways Agency have a responsibility to look after the verges along the motorways. Much of the M4 is surrounded by fields in which cattle graze, and so knowing that it spreads by seed and by allowing it to grow freely in the verges where it can spread freely into neighbouring fields, is this not illegal and irresponsible behaviour by the Highways Agency?

With this in mind:

Please could you let me have a copy of the ragwaort control
procedure/policy for the M3 and M4 in particular, showing locations of high risk?

I believe this should cover ragwort pulling and spraying as a means of control so:

Please could you tell me the total cost of ragwort pulling that has been carried out over the last few years along the three years ?

Please could you tell me the total cost of ragwort spraying that has been carried out over the last few years along the three years?

If costings are not available for reasons of commercial
sensitivity, then please provide undertandable quantities so I can detemine whether there has been a decline in the levels of ragwort control in the last three years.

Thank you

Yours faithfully,

Richard Egis

Thank you for your email to the Highways Agency.
 
If you are reporting a real time incident which requires immediate
attention please call the Highways Agency Information Line on 0300 123
5000.
 
The Highways Agency is responsible for operating, maintaining and
improving the Strategic Road Network in England on behalf of the Secretary
of State for Transport.  This consists of the Motorway network and the
Major Trunk roads. A map of the roads for which we are responsible can be
found here [1]http://www.highways.gov.uk/aboutus/139.a....
 
If your email relates to an issue which is not on the strategic road
network, for example a suburban, local or residential road, you should
forward your email to the relevant Local Authority who should be able to
assist you. You can find details of Local Authorities using the search
facility on the direct.gov website at:
[2]http://local.direct.gov.uk/LDGRedirect/S...
 
Your email will be passed to the relevant team within the Highways Agency
and they will respond to you within a maximum of 15 working days.
 
If you have made a request under the Freedom of Information Act your
request will be dealt with in line with our guidelines which are published
here: [3]http://www.highways.gov.uk/foiresponses/...
 
Yours sincerely
 
Highways Agency Information Line

show quoted sections

Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or
recorded for legal purposes.

References

Visible links
1. http://www.highways.gov.uk/aboutus/139.a...
2. http://local.direct.gov.uk/LDGRedirect/S...
3. http://www.highways.gov.uk/foiresponses/...

Hello,

Thank you for contacting the Highways Agency Information Line on 18/08/12 with your Freedom of Information (FOI) request. Your request has been forwarded to the relevant team who will respond within 20 working days under ref 13347263.

In the meantime, please take a look at the following link: http://www.highways.gov.uk/foiresponses/... for more information regarding the Highways Agency's process for FOI requests

Kind regards,

David
Highways Agency | National Traffic Operations Centre | 3 Ridgeway, Quinton Bus. Park | Birmingham | B32 1AF
Tel: 0300 123 5000
Web: http://www.highways.gov.uk

Safe roads, Reliable journeys, Informed travellers
Highways Agency, an Executive Agency of the Department for Transport.

show quoted sections

2 Attachments

Dear Mr Egis
 
Thank you for your email of 18 August 2012 relating to Ragwort on our
network.
 
Please find attached a response to your concerns and the requested control
plan for Area 3 (M4/M3 corridors).
 
Regards
 
Mrs D Davies, NDD - Directorate Services Team Manager
Highways Agency | The Cube | 199 Wharfside Street | Birmingham | B1 1RN

Safe roads, reliable journeys, informed travellers
Highways Agency, an executive agency of the Department for Transport.
 

show quoted sections

Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or
recorded for legal purposes.