Cut it back

Overgrown vegetation is a hazard for blind and partially sighted people. It causes injuries and prevents us from navigating safely and independently. We hope to raise awareness of this issue and create positive change through our #CutItBack campaign. We have also produced some guidance about ‘cutting it back’, and reporting overgrown foliage in your area.

The Highways Act 1980 protects everyone’s right to use and enjoy the highway. But, our streets are increasingly becoming less accessible to blind and partially sighted (BPS) people.

In our Listening month report, over 75 per cent of BPS people told us  that “Overhanging branches and overgrown hedges and vegetation were a real deterrent to people and a cause of accidents.”

We consistently hear that people have been hurt, injured and narrowly avoided accidents due to overgrown bushes, overhanging branches and foliage. Sometimes people must walk into the road as there isn’t a safe way to continue on the pavement.

West Sussex SLC member, Clinton is shown walking with his long cane, into a large garden hedge which is protruding onto the pavement.

Clinton, West Sussex SLC member, pictured walking into an overhanging hedge

What we’re doing to change this

Our #CutItBack campaign aims to enable blind and partially sighted people to navigate the streets safely, independently, and with confidence.

We’ve created a series of videos to raise awareness of the barriers BPS people face when navigating the streets. These are to encourage people to cut back their own foliage and report other overgrown vegetation.

We also work with local authorities to help them understand the impact that overgrown vegetation has on BPS people. We also encourage them to use their powers under the Highways Act 1980 to maintain safe streets for everyone.

How you can get involved

Support our ‘Cut it back’ campaign by:

  • Watching and sharing our videos
  • Cutting back your vegetation
  • Asking your neighbours to cut it back
  • Reporting overgrown or overhanging vegetation to your local council
  • Use our #CutItBack campaign hashtag in any related social media activity

Videos

(Coming soon)

We’ve created a series of videos to help raise awareness of our campaign.

Please watch and share.

Use our letter template to write to your local council

Stay in the know

Want to get involved in our national campaigns? Stay up to date with news from Sight Loss Councils and Thomas Pocklington Trust by signing up to our mailing list.

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