Path verges

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It is essential to support the path to prevent lateral spread of the base layer and to protect the edges of the surface layer.

edging soft

Soft edging method...

The soft edging method consisting of topsoil and turfs can form verges (shoulders) that makes a path surface on top of wider base layer look much narrower. The same method can also consist of keeping the base and surface layers at the same width, with the undisturbed sides of the excavated formation tray providing adequate support to the path. Some vegetation encroachment will occur with the second method, but this may be desirable to give a more natural look.

edging timber

Hard edging method...

In some path situations, the base and surface layers have been supported using timber edging or concrete kerbing. However, this hard edging method on unbound surfaces can eventually cause major problems as the surface wears below the inside top edge: the edge will end up higher than the surface, which will prevent surface water runoff, leading to puddling or scouring. These exposed edges also pose a trip hazard to users. Timber edging made from boards will rapidly deteriorate, the path will collapse and complete re-construction of the path will be required. Using timber edging or concrete kerbing can also increase construction costs. Concrete kerbing is generally only used for footway pavements constructed to Local Authority roads and pavement standards.

For woodland paths, where tree roots are exposed and there is limited availability of turf and soil to create suitable path verges to support the path, sawn logs can be useful alternative. Also, cellular confinement system, such as 'geocells' infilled with free draining aggregate could be used.

When forming and landscaping path verges make sure...
...the planted turf or topsoil is not higher than the finished path surface layer (they should be finished off level with the path surface or just below) - high verges can prevent surface water from running of the path surface causing standing water and scouring
...the verges slope down away from the edges of the path surface to allow surface water to runoff and not back on to the path


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