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How Much Does Block Paving Cost per m2 (UK) - 2024 Prices

By: John Devlin

Laying concrete block paving like the image below can be costly and time-consuming. Luckily, we have created an easy block paving cost guide to give you a breakdown. Since COVID-19, block paving material prices have rocketed, so this year, we have overhauled this guide to provide you with a better picture.

An installer laying a block paving driveway

How Much Will Block Paving Cost?

There are a lot of factors that will go into your final block paving quote, which we will discuss below.

In our 30 years of experience running concrete block paving teams and quotating domestic projects, the average cost of a block paved driveway is between £100 – £110 per square metre.

The more complex and large your block paving project, the more it will cost. That’s the simple part. However, you will also find that the average cost of block paving increases the further south towards London you go.

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What we will cover in this post

  • The Factors That Makeup Block Paving Costs
  • Do You Need Planning Permission to Block Pave
  • Typical Block Paving Prices for Driveways & Patios
  • Additional Costs You May Not Have Considered
  • Types of Blocks & Which To Buy
  • The Manufacturers You Should Look For
  •  The Most Popular Block Paving Styles & Designs
  • A Quick Rundown of Block Paving Colours
  • Where To Find Expert Block Paving Installers
  • Block Paving Alternatives to Consider

Why Our Block Paving Guidance is Reliable

Our three decades of running block paving companies have resulted in a wealth of expertise; we have hands-on experience in planning, installing, and pricing block paving for residential homes.

For around 5 years, all I did all day was concrete block paving, new driveway and patio quotes. All my father did was order, plan and install these new driveways and patios.

You can count on what we discuss to be accurate.

What Factors Influence Block Paving Installation Costs?

a grey block paving path being layed

Quality materials, professional block paving installation and base work all affect the price you pay for a block paved driveway or patio. Here’s where the bulk of that block paving cost comes from, on average.

Choosing the Right Materials

a large block paving installation nearly completed

Patio and driveway block paving will vary in material quality and type. For example, you’ll generally find that blocks split into 50ml and 60ml varieties, which are a little more expensive.

You can pay less for concrete block paving than natural stone blocks. Concrete is also popular because it’s more versatile. However, natural stone block paving looks effortlessly stunning and adds a lot of value to your property.

Remember that if you choose one colour and one block design for your new block-paved driveway, it’ll cost less than ‘going bespoke.’

Choosing different colours and styles for borders and edging, for example, is common and looks impressive, but your tradesman will expect more for the complexity of the job and the time taken.

You Can't Skrimp Aggregates and Basework

Your aggregate, or hardcore, is the sub-base that adds foundation between the soil and sand beneath a block or concrete driveway. It’s often crushed stone and dust, compacted together for stability.

Excavating and installing your base will be a significant part of the block paving cost. If you have a lawn or old flagged drive, expect cheaper; if it is solid, thick concrete, then the job will be labour intensive and expect a higher price.

The condition of your existing driveway can dictate the price you pay. For example, if you already have an old block paving driveway, it’ll be nice and easy to remove and replace. However, if your tradesman needs to remove trees or do serious excavation to lay the base, he will expect more money for the labour.

This side of the labour costs is essential to consider before laying block paving. It’s easy to cut corners and costs by thinking the base work doesn’t matter so much. However, with a cheap job, your block paving is going to sink, crack, and cause havoc. You get what you pay for.

How Much are Labour Costs for Block Paving?

a stack of block paving bricks and a mallet

It is challenging to price up an average labour cost per m2, as many variables exist. You can typically expect to pay £250 – £300 per day for however long installing block paving takes. This is based on a two-person team where one is a paviour, and another is a labourer.

The Costs of Excavating Existing Surfaces

We touched on this above, but what you currently have dictates the time and costs to install what you want to have in the future.

Some average driveways are ripped up and disposed of by lunchtime, while others, notably old concrete drives, are back-breaking work, even with modern-day breakers and all the right tools hired.

Budgeting for Waste Removal

a picture of a skip and new block paving driveway in grey

Your chosen block paving firm will have included removing all waste from your property, including the old driveway. If you’re doing it yourself, skip hire has increased significantly in the last five years. Expect to pay around £250 minimum for a 12-yard skip.

Up to 12 tonnes can be carried in a 12-yarder, but although this might sound a lot, they do fill up quickly. Installers quote to calculate the amount of waste and skips present, among other things.

If you have a local grab-and-deliver service, ask them. In the North East, we have a few, and they can take 18 tonnes in one go and are cheaper than skips.

Building Regulations for Block Paving Driveways

a picture of a hand drawing garden designs

Don’t worry, you won’t need planning permission for permeable concrete blocks. But if you lay block paving that’s not porous by design, you will need a sustainable drainage system.

It would help to let any water drain into your borders or your grass.

Anything bigger than five square metres without drainage will need planning permission, which will set you back £206 to your local planning authority.

A good paving installer will plan a block paving driveway or patio with adequate drainage so that water does not run off your land, and then you will be fine.

Detailed Calculator & Price Breakdown

Below is an easy bar chart of how the final price breaks down. Other things can influence the price, but these are the big four.

Excavation
20%
Materials
35%
Installation
35%
Waste Removal
10%

Typical Costs To Install Block Paving

The tables below display the average cost of block paving per m2.

Guide to Block Paving Driveways Prices

How much does block paved driveway cost? For an average sized driveway (40m2) installed with block paving you can expect to pay £4000.

Block Paving Installation
Average Size in m2
Car Space
Days to Install
Driveways Material Costs
Labour Costs
Final Costs
Small Block Paved Driveway 20m2
20m2
1
2
£900
£1200
£2100
Average Sized Block Paved Driveways
40m2
2-3
3-4
£1800
£2200
£4000
Large Driveways
80m2
5-6
5-6
£3500
£3500
£7000

Block Paved Patio Prices: What to Expect

How much does block paving patio cost? For an average sized patio (40m2) installed with block paving you can expect to pay £3600.

Block Paving Installation
Average Size in m2
Usage
Days to Install
Patio Material Costs
Labour Costs
Final Costs
Small Block Paved Patio Area 20m2
20m2
Table & Chairs
2
£700
£1000
£1700
Average Sized Block Paved Garden Patio
40m2
Table, Chairs, Seating Area and Fire Pit
3
£1600
£2000
£3600
Large Patio or Multiple Patios
80m2
BBQ Area, Furniture, Trampoline, Shed
5
£3300
£3300
£6600

Material-Specific Cost Breakdown for Block Paving

The choice of materials for block paving significantly impacts the total block paving cost per m2. Each material brings its own set of benefits and characteristics, influencing the final appearance and performance of the paved surface.

  • Concrete Block Paving: Offers a cost-effective, versatile option. They provide a range of colours and finishes at an affordable price point while ensuring durability.
  • Brick Pavers: This traditional brick paving offer a classic look with enhanced durability. They are typically positioned at a higher price bracket but look terrific, especially on older homes.
  • Natural Stone Pavers: Premium choices like granite or limestone stand out for their unique textures and exceptional durability. They reflect a higher higher block paving cost but offer unmatched natural elegance and a timeless appearance.
  • Composite Block Paving: Composite block paving combines materials that balance practicality, cost, and visual appeal.

Anticipating Additional Costs in Block Paving Installation

Additional Costs
Description
What’s Involved
Time to Install
Costs
Block Paved Step
A matching blocked paved step created with boot kerbs and blocks
Specialist corner kerbs installed and step created
3 hours
£150
Double Step
See Above
See Above
5 hours
£250
Aco Drains
Drainage installation to catch water flowing towards house
A channel is created in front of brickwork or garage to protect from water
1 hour per linear metres
£80 per L/M
Pin Kerbs
Pin kerbs are installed in any area that needs retainment.
A specialist pin kerb is set in concrete.
1 hour per 3 linear metres
£25 per linear metre
Boot Kerbs
Boot kerbs allow for high raised borders
Boot kerbs designed to match the blocks are set in concrete
30 Minutes per linear metre
£40 Per linear metre
Manhole Covers
Manhole covers are swapped for inset trays and blended with the paving
Removal of manhole and specialist tray inserted and paved.
3 hours
£250 Each

Overall, you are always likely to expect a block-paving driveway price to be higher than that of a patio. This is because driveways generally require more excavation and labour. They need the base and foundation to support cars driving over them.

Less digging and compacted stone in the garden for your patio will be cheaper. That’s because you’re only ever likely to see foot traffic.

Ongoing Maintenance and Cleaning Costs

The upkeep of block paving is pivotal for preserving its look and extending its lifespan. Regular maintenance routines can significantly influence the paving’s condition and appearance.

  • Routine Cleaning: Regular cleaning, typically costing around £5 per square metre, is essential to keep your patio or block paving driveway weed free, remove dirt, and avoid staining.
  • Sealing and Protection: Occasional sealing, which will cost between £12-15 per square metre depending on the area and complexity, can safeguard the blocks from the elements, enhance the colours, and prolong the overall lifespan of your paving. A cheap water-based sealer is yearly, and a high-end resin product will last five years.

What Is Block Paving?

It comprises individually laid blocks or bricks, arranged in distinct patterns, bonded together with jointing sand. This technique results in an attractive, robust surface that’s straightforward to maintain or replace, enhancing outdoor spaces’ aesthetic and functional value.

Weighing Up the Pros and Cons of Block Paving

It’s crucial to evaluate these factors thoroughly, block paving might not be for you.

Advantages of Choosing Blocks

  • Flexibility & Choice: Block paving enhances your property’s exterior with various colours, styles, and laying patterns.
  • Durability and Longevity: When properly installed, it withstands heavy use and maintains its integrity under vehicles or foot traffic.
  • Ease of Maintenance: Its modular nature means individual blocks can be lifted and replaced if damaged, simplifying repairs.
  • Sustainable Drainage: Permeable paving facilitates water drainage, stop puddles and pooling, and support eco-friendly drainage solutions.

Potential Drawbacks of Blocks

  • Initial Investment: Quality materials and intricate patterns incur higher initial costs, reflecting the long-term value they add.
  • Ongoing Upkeep: To preserve its pristine condition, occasional cleaning, re-sanding, or sealing might be necessary. These actions deter weeds and maintain the property’s appeal.
  • Risk of Settlement: If not expertly installed, the paving might shift over time, potentially causing an uneven surface and encouraging weeds.
  • Professional Installation: Achieving the best outcome requires skilled block paving installation, which factors into the total cost and forces you to look for the best installers.

We have a guide to help you find the right person further down!

Types of Block Paving Materials

a fitter laying a single block

Block paving doesn’t just fall under one standard – many different types and materials exist. Here are the three main paving blocks you’re likely to come across.

Durable Concrete Blocks

Concrete blocks are usually trendy, thanks to their low pricing and flexibility. Generally, these block pavers are pretty easy to install and will take some wear – though the colour will fade over time. They’re not as fancy as natural stones but tick most boxes. Just remember when factoring your overall block paving coast to take into account the edging stones.

High-Quality Clay Blocks Selection

Clay blocks are much more sustainable than concrete blocks and tend to be more expensive. However, there’s no need to seal clay paving against the elements, and they offer excellent grip. They tend to be trickier to handle, but the pros far outweigh the cons for many people.

The Classic Appeal of Block Paving Bricks

Block paving bricks are an excellent choice if you want to keep your new block paving driveway looking brilliant and uniform. It also offers some natural grip. The massive benefit of brick over concrete blocks is that it is pretty good to go after laying. However, you’ll need a very careful sub-base, as a brick can break and slip easily.

Leading Manufacturers of Block Paving Products

  • Marshalls: Marshalls boasts the most extensive range of block paving in the UK, including Driveline 50, the country’s bestselling block paving. They also coordinate edging stones and accessories such as weed membranes and jointing compounds.
  • Barleystone: This company, based in Ireland, has provided paving solutions for over 80 years. They supply and install a wide range of paving for both homeowners and commercial projects.
  • Plaspave: Supplying a comprehensive range of block paving, and permeable paving to withstand weather damage, setts and cobbles, this company supplies everything you need for a patio or driveway paving makeover.
  • Brett: One of the UK’s leading paving suppliers, Bretts offers a wide range of blocks plus accessories like kerb stones and border edging.
  • Thomas Armstrong: Manufactures paving built to last. The company offers a 25-year guarantee on all paving products and supplies to contractors, covering the country’s length and breadth.
  • Bradstone: From porcelain tiles to concrete paving blocks and hard landscaping features, Bradstone has everything you need to transform your driveway or outdoor space and even manufactures an eco-friendly reduced carbon option
  • Tobermore: The Artro range of block paving that Tobermore sells comes in a range of colours, and they also do Tegula setts for a more traditional look.

Sizes and Styles Of Block Paving

  • 50mm: This is suitable for light usage on driveways, paths and patios
  • 60mm: Medium usage for car parks, adopted highways and delivery lorries
  • 80mm: Heavy-duty blocks suited to service stations, oil tanker deliveries, and refuse wagons.
  • Tumbled: Often used in conservation projects and residential streetscapes, this lightly weathered option can be used in various designs and offers the traditional look of natural stone setts.
  • Drivesett: This range’s durability and beauty make it one of the most popular block paving driveway choices in England.
  • Tegula: Tegula Paving provides a cost-effective and quality-assured solution that will meet any project’s specifications, no matter how challenging. It can be found in pretty much every DIY superstore, such as Jewsons and B and Q.

Popular Colour Options

  • Granite
  • Light Grey
  • Grey
  • Charcoal
  • Brindle
  • Red
  • Burnt Ochre

Step-by-Step Guide to Laying Block Paving

If you want to lay block paving then getting the basics right with the block paving installation process is essential for those going alone with their driveways or patios. 

First, I would never recommend you attempt to lay block paving; this is skilled work involving compaction, water tables, drainage, and dangerous tools like steel saws and breakers.

But if you insist, below is a detailed, step-by-step breakdown of the process, and hopefully, it helps get your block paving laid correctly.

Research and Planning

Initial Layout: Start with a basic sketch of your intended paved area. This helps assess the space, calculate material quantities, and envision the end result.

Measurements: Accurately measure the area to determine the amount of materials needed, such as the quantity of paving blocks, sub-base material, and sand.

Essential Tools and Materials

Essential Tools: Assemble tools like a broom, rake, shovel, spirit level, mallet, and wheelbarrow. Access to a cement mixer, compactor, block cutter or stone saw is crucial.

Required Materials: Procure the necessary supplies, including sub-base aggregate (MOT Type 1), bedding sand, and paving blocks.

Preparing the Site

Marking Out: Use string lines and pegs to delineate the paving area. Clear and excavate the site to a depth of around 150mm below the intended finished level, considering the slope for adequate drainage.

Foundation: Ensure a solid foundation by excavating to the correct depth, accommodating both the sub-base and the thickness of the paving blocks.

Setting Edge Restraints

Stability Framework: Install edge restraints around the perimeter to confine the pavers, securing them in concrete to prevent movement and maintain the structure.

Installing the Sub-base Layer for Stability

Foundation Layer: Compact a 100mm MOT Type 1 hardcore layer as a sub-base to provide a stable and level foundation, essential for long-lasting, durable paving.

Sanding and Screeding Techniques

Level Bedding: Spread a layer of sharp sand, compact it, and screed it to a precise level, ensuring a flat surface for laying the blocks.

The Proper Method for Laying the Pavers

Installation: Begin placing the paving stones, keeping consistent joint widths. Arrange them slightly higher than the desired final level to account for subsequent compacting.

Compaction and Jointing for Long-Lasting Results

Final Touches: After you lay block paving, compact the paved area to embed the stones firmly in the sand bed. Finally, fill the joints with kiln-dried sand and compact again, ensuring all spaces are completely filled and the surface is level.

How to Find Expert Block Paving Installers

We recommend Bark.com for reliable and local block paving companies.

Bark.com is a popular website where homeowners can find the best local and trusted pavers to quote on all styles of block paving driveway and patios. It’s 100% free for you to use.

You can get free estimates and check out the paving contractor’s reviews and ratings, which users have written like you.

Checklist for Hiring a Block Paving Specialist

Selecting the right tradesman for your block paving project is crucial for ensuring the success and longevity of your outdoor space. Use the following comprehensive checklist to help you choose a qualified block paving specialist who will do a first class install:

  • Experience and Specialisation: Verify the tradesman’s expertise in block paving, ensuring they have a solid track record.
  • Assess their years in the business to gauge their industry knowledge and problem-solving capabilities.
  • References and Portfolio: Ask for a portfolio of their previous work and ensure it aligns with your quality expectations and the style you’re aiming for.
  • Request contactable references for firsthand accounts of their reliability, work ethic, and customer satisfaction.
  • Detailed Quotation: Insist on a detailed quote that breaks down the costs for materials, labour, and any additional charges to ensure transparency.
  • Compare quotes from different tradespeople to ensure you receive competitive and fair pricing.
  • Insurance: Check that the tradesman has valid public liability insurance to cover any accidental damage to your property or unforeseen injuries.
  • Warranties: Discuss warranties or guarantees for the materials and workmanship to secure your investment.
  • Project Timeline: Agree on a clear timeline, including start and completion dates, and understand the process for handling delays or unforeseen issues.
  • Preparation Requirements: Clarify if there are any preparatory tasks you need to undertake or if they’re included in the service, such as clearing the area or arranging access.
  • Design Preferences: Ensure the tradesperson is willing to collaborate on your design ideas and can translate your vision into reality while offering professional advice.
  • Compliance with Regulations: Confirm that they adhere to local planning permissions and building regulations to prevent legal issues and ensure high standards.

Block Paving Alternatives

Want to consider a different look entirely, here are some alternatives to block paving.

Resin-Bonded Surfaces

a yellow driveway with charcoal border

Resin-bonded surfaces make for great driveways thanks to their durability and relatively low cost per metre. It’s here for Resin prices per square metre

They’re low maintenance but don’t have the same eye-catching look as your block alternative – plus, it’s only ever permeable if it’s bound, not bonded. Bound resin is likely to be a better choice.

The Appeal of Pattern Imprinted Concrete

a parking area in the rain

Pattern imprinted concrete is popular nowadays thanks to its endurance – up to 20 years in many cases – and its versatility in look and style. It’s also pretty low maintenance and won’t struggle with weeds. However, compared to blocks, it’s costly per m2. It’s here for Imprinted concrete prices per square metre.

Tarmac: A Cost-Effective Paving Solution

Tarmac, like asphalt, is an excellent option if you’re serious about weather resistance and want to avoid paying out for clay blocks. It’s also highly slip-resistant, giving you a fair amount of traction as you drive in and out. However, it doesn’t look as lovely as blocks – it’s more an option for pure practicality above all else, and it’ll endure many years. It’s here for Tarmac prices per square metre

Gravel: Simplicity and Cheap

A gravel driveway can look stylish and often roll in cheaper than blocks; however, it has an annoying habit of getting everywhere. As it’s essentially loose stone, you’re at risk of your driveway spilling every which way, meaning it’s pretty demanding on the maintenance front. To save money on a bespoke look, it’s a reliable choice. It’s here for Gravel prices per square metre

Rustic Charm of Cobblestone Paving

A lesser known alternative to block, and slightly more expensive. This surface lends itself to older properties. It’s here for Cobblestone prices per square metre

FAQ's

How Long Does Block Paving Last

Provided you look after your blocks carefully, your driveway or patio can withstand more than a decade of use. However, that means careful cleaning, weed prevention, and sealing every two years. Put in time and effort, and your paving will weather the years to come.

Can you Install Block Paving Yourself?

It’s only ever a good idea to pave your driveway if you have years of experience in doing so. That’s because a poor job can lead to sinking, increasing costs, and potential physical harm for anyone who dares to walk or drive on it. Trust us – the average price for block paving per m2 is worth it.

Is Block Paving Cheaper Than Slabs?

Blocks are pricier than standard paving slabs. However, the added paver cost is worth it for the sheer quality and versatility in style. Moreover, block pavers per m2 are available in porous material to let water through.

How Many Paving Blocks In A M2?

This varies depending on the type of block you invest in, natural stone block paving, for example, is rarely the same size per piece, but concrete blocks tend to arrive in standard sizes of 200 x 100 x 50 (mm). Some experts suggest that you should get between 44 and 50 clay blocks per m2.

Using an online calculator or asking your chosen paver for more details is worth it.

Last Word

a double block paved driveway with lights

Block paving prices, monoblocking prices, and patio costs can escalate depending on your needs.

Materials and complexity will increase your bill. However, you also need to consider edging blocks, weed membranes, base sand/kiln-dried sand, the sub-base and sealing, and—of course—the size and scope, as well as the required depth, of such a project.

What’s more, there’s always the chance of you needing planning permission if your drainage isn’t good enough – so look into permeable block paving costs, too. This sounds like a lot to juggle, but ultimately, it is worth the mathematics for a great-looking patio or drive that does precisely what you want or need it to do.

The above pricing we’ve shared covers the UK average block paving cost in terms of labour, material pricing, location, and any additional block paving costs that arise along the way. Use this as a template, and make sure to get at least three different quotes to make a firm average of your own.

Be sure to keep an open mind, hunt down an online calculator, and trust your experienced local tradies like us.

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