Find out more about depaving and how to start your own project

Sections in this guide (click title to view)

1. What is Depaving?

Depaving involves removing sections of hard paving, such as concrete and tarmac, and replacing it with a permeable surface such as gravel or soil.

2. Why depave?

Depaving is an easy way to replace the concreted areas in our front gardens with a more permeable surface like soil, gravel or woodchip. Not only is this a great way of improving the appearance of your garden but is also much better for the environment. This is because the rainwater is able to soak back into the ground naturally rather than run-off straight into drains and sewers as it does with hard paving. Once water has soaked through the soil and gravel, it helps to replenish groundwater supplies and it helps to reduce the risk of flooding.

3. What if I am looking to pave my front garden?

Due to the number of front gardens lost to concrete, in 2008 the government changed planning laws to encourage the use of permeable materials. If you plan to pave more than five square metres of your front garden using non-permeable materials, you will need planning permission.

4. How can I find out more about depaving and get involved?

If you have a driveway, paved garden or area in your local community that you would like to depave, then please speak to us. We are happy to visit you to discuss your ideas and help you to plan your depaving project. All waste will be recycled locally and we can provide the tools and compost you need to carry out the work.

You can contact us on or call 020 7926 8990.

5. Where can I see examples of Depaving?

You can download a copy of our Depaving factsheet below which features examples of local projects or request a hard copy by emailing or calling 020 7926 8990.


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