Old paving slabs in Banbury town centre replaced with springy material

'Flexi-pave' has been used around trees in Banbury town centre to replace the old block paving. Photo: Oxfordshire County Council
'Flexi-pave' has been used around trees in Banbury town centre to replace the old block paving. Photo: Oxfordshire County Council

Anyone walking around Banbury town centre may have noticed a new addition to the landscape.

Not a new shop or attraction, but new surfaces have been appearing around trees in Market Place.

'Flexi-pave' has been used around trees in Banbury town centre to replace the old block paving. Photo: Oxfordshire County Council

'Flexi-pave' has been used around trees in Banbury town centre to replace the old block paving. Photo: Oxfordshire County Council

This new material, called 'flexi-pave', is described by Oxfordshire County Council as an innovative way of replacing block paving which became loose and in need of repair.

Cllr Yvonne Constance, cabinet member for environment, said: “We are always looking for new and innovative ways to do things.

“By trying this new material in Banbury we are making good the damaged area and testing out how the recycled mix weathers.”

Officers decided that instead of replacing the blockwork like-for-like, only for them to come lose again, or cut down the trees, they used 'flexi-pave’ instead, at a cost of £50,000.

'Flexi-pave' has been used around trees in Banbury town centre to replace the old block paving. Photo: Oxfordshire County Council

'Flexi-pave' has been used around trees in Banbury town centre to replace the old block paving. Photo: Oxfordshire County Council

The material incorporates recycled rubber from tyres and also includes aggregates similar in colour to the rest of the pavement.

The flexibility combined with the 'pleasing' look will hopefully mean that the solution will be long lasting and, because the material is permeable, the trees will still get the water that they need.