Modern day flail mowing machinery has evolved over the last half century or so from the gangs of labourers that were employed to work their way along river banks wielding hand scythes, to the sophisticated flail mowing machines that are used for mowing river banks today.
The Commissioners’ flail mowing rounds are undertaken in accordance with our Operations Manual, and timed to minimise any impact on grass embankments, wildlife or habitat.
The ‘Main cut’ commences in mid-July and is generally completed by the end of November in most seasons, before the earth embankments become too wet for the mowing machines to operate.
Regular mowing of the banks creates a tight grass sward, which helps to stabilise the embankments. Mulched plant material is left behind the mowing machines to decompose over the autumn and winter months, and provides a beneficial ‘thatch’ for many species of wildlife.