Does your project require gravel aggregates? If you are new to purchasing aggregates or are just unsure as to which gravel would be best for your project, read our guide below.

Gravel is a broad term for a growing range of loose aggregates. These can be used for groundwork such as gardens, paths, and driveways. Gravel by definition is usually angular or rounded stones, roughly 5-20mm in size, of any colour.

Using gravel as décor or to create a path on your garden reduces long term upkeep and creates a more livable and usable area. It is a very cost-friendly aggregate, is easy to source, and with such a wide range available, there is always something to suit your specific project.

Gravel can also be used for other functionalities such as drainage within soil, and as a base layer under tarmac.

What Can Gravel Be Used For?

There is a wide range of uses for gravel, the most common including:

  • Driveways
  • Pathways
  • Base layer under tarmac
  • Mulch
  • Drainage
  • Pebble dash
  • Patio bases
  • Garden décor

Which Type Should I Use for My Project and What Depth?

­­For the use as a surface dressing, you can use more costly aggregates as well as cheaper alternatives such as limestone chippings. This can be a more budget-friendly way of creating a driveway or garden path, providing you are using a good sub-base. You can read our blog about selecting the best sub-base for your project here.

For a loose surface dressing, gravel around 6-20mm is recommended. This size range is suitable so that it’s not too small to spread too easily when walked upon, but not too large so that it is difficult to use as a path or drive.

As a general rule, for a pathway, you want to be looking at a size of between 6-10mm and 10-20mm for driveways, however, this is only a suggestion.

A very popular question when it comes to using gravel is, what depth should I have?

This does highly depend on the type used, the standard recommendation is to have a minimum depth of twice the size of the gravel used. Any larger and the ground would be too deep and unstable, any thinner and the ground would be exposed very quickly due to movement.

What Are the Pros and Cons?

Gravel is usually a popular choice due to being such a cost-effective yet attractive option for a wide range of uses.

An aggregate such as this allows for a well-kept appearance, whilst requiring minimal upkeep and ongoing costs. Unlike other materials, it can be used at any point after purchase, the quality doesn’t diminish over time.

Another positive for using gravel is that it is easily maintainable with a standard weedkiller if necessary. Therefore your upkeep costs are kept to a minimum.

An unexpected selling point is actually the sound created by any movement. If you choose to use this aggregate for your driveway or path, this can be very off-putting for potential burglars as any car or person walking on top would create noise.

As with all aggregates, gravel has its negative points. Unfortunately, it can become quite widespread if not properly contained and may need re-filling if this does happen, in order to still cover the desired area effectively.

Do I Need A Permit for A Gravel Driveway?

Some local councils do require you to possess a permit in order to gravel your driveway. It generally depends on where you live and your particular driveway.

You should check this prior to purchasing any aggregates or starting any work.

Where Can I Purchase Gravel Aggregates From?

Our KCM Aggregates department offers both high-quality products at competitive rates. And the expert knowledge required to best recommend the right aggregate for your project.

We supply a wide range of recycled and primary aggregates for all projects.

Still not sure what you need? Just give us a call and we would be happy to help.

To enquire, call Ian Harrison on 01709 762 267 or email ian@kcmwaste.com