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Yorkshire Times
A Voice of the North
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3:11 PM 28th August 2020

Flower Power To Help Car Journeys This Bank Holiday

Flower power could help ease young passengers’ travel boredom this bank holiday.

A rich variety of flowers on the verge to increase biodiversity along England’s busiest roads
A rich variety of flowers on the verge to increase biodiversity along England’s busiest roads
Highways England has reminded travellers of its ‘staycation’ road trip game card, designed to keep young passengers busy on long journeys.

Roadsides are busy green corridors, filled with all sorts of plants and animals and children are being encouraged to look for a variety of wildflowers and birds living alongside England’s motorways and major A roads.

Highways England Head of Biodiversity, Stuart Wilson, said:

“As well as managing a road network that stretches for 4,300 miles, connecting people and places from Berwick-upon-Tweed to Penzance, we also look after around 30,000ha of green verge which contains a range of habitats supporting interesting plants and animals.

“I’m really pleased to see us release our star spotter game which passengers can use to enjoy spotting the rich variety of wildflowers and animals while on their journeys.”

“In preparing for these journeys, please remember to check your tyres, oil, water, lights and fuel and if you’re on a long journey, remember to take breaks.

“It could be busy on the roads, so do check conditions before you travel and try and leave plenty of time for your journey. Let’s all enjoy summer safely.”

Those travelling to tourist hotspots – including Cornwall along the A30, Devon on the A38 and the Yorkshire Dales on the A1(M) – are able to spot an array of wildflowers and wildlife in the road verges.

Knapweed
Knapweed
Among the flowers that can be spotted is knapweed. Also known as ‘Hardheads’ this wildflower is one of the toughest meadow plants and very popular with bees and butterflies.

Other wildflowers include oxeye daisies and rosebay willowherb, which has seeds fitted with tiny ‘parachutes’ to help them disperse. Passengers can also keep their eyes peeled on their journeys for animals, including grey herons and Daubenton’s bats.

With more people holidaying and taking day trips in the UK, Highways England has issued helpful advice to help you stay safe.

Before you set off on a journey, Highways England’s advice is:

Do your vehicle safety checks
Check loads are safely secured
Check travel conditions

If you are towing:

Check you have the correct licence and insurance to tow whatever the weight
Check your vehicle is connected correctly
Check the load is secure and within the limits for the vehicle.

Highways England traffic officers will be on patrol and working to help clear any incidents.

Highways England has released a game card for children to enjoy on car journeys by spotting wildflowers and birds
Highways England has released a game card for children to enjoy on car journeys by spotting wildflowers and birds
The game card can be downloaded to be printed here:
https://assets.highwaysengland.co.uk/Campaigns/Are+you+a+star+spotter.pdf

⚠️ Keep your eyes on the road if you're driving. And never stop in an emergency area, hard shoulder or verge for anything other than an emergency or if directed to by a police or traffic officer.


For more information about driving on motorways, visit: www.highwaysengland.co.uk/motorways

Highways England provides real time traffic information at www.highwaysengland.co.uk/traffic

Journey planning advice, including making sure vehicles are ready for the road, can be found here: https://www.think.gov.uk/campaign/vehicle-safety-checks/

You can find information about how to avoid tailgating by giving fellow road users enough space here: https://highwaysengland.co.uk/staysafestayback/

And for advice about loading your vehicle safely, visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/load-securing-vehicle-operator-guidance/load-securing-vehicle-operator-guidance

Towing advice: https://www.gov.uk/towing-with-car