£600k boost will help tackle Southend’s most serious potholes
The most serious potholes in Southend are set to finally be repaired thanks to a Government cash boost.
Extra cash was set aside by the Government to be sent to local authorities to be used to clear any delayed road maintenance work.
Southend Council was awarded £617,000, which it will use to fill the borough’s most serious potholes, give the High Street a mini-makeover, and resurface Western Esplanade and Leather Lane.
Andrew Moring, cabinet member for infrastructure, said: “I’m really pleased the Government recognised the need for this financial boost to clear the backlog of identified highway maintenance issues.
“As the majority of the money we have been allocated will go towards repairing the most serious potholes, hopefully drivers in the borough will soon see an improvement to local roads.”
The repairs will take place across the whole of the borough and come after a programme of work between March and June this year to catch up on a backlog of repairs delayed by the snow and cold weather last winter.
Earlier this year, the council allocated an additional £100,000 to fund two rapid pothole repair teams.
That cash was in addition to the authority’s agreed £102,000 budget for road repairs, and £195,000 for pothole repairs over the next three years.
As part of the plans, High Street will also benefit from a mini-makeover between January and March 2019.
The pavements between Southend Victoria and Pier Head have already been assessed, with problems identified, such as damaged or missing slabs, signs and posts.
Some of the slabs will be replaced.
James Courtenay, Southend Council’s cabinet member for growth, said: “It is great news, especially following on from the concentrated effort taking place between us and our partners to improve and regenerate our High Street.
“As well as the health and safety implications of having missing or damaged pavement slabs, signs and posts, there is the aesthetic look and feel of the High Street.
“If an area is well looked after and taken care of, it encourages those who use it to also take care of it.
“Let’s hope this work will also make people think twice about littering and behaving in an anti-social way.”
Alison Dewey, Southend Business Improvement District (BID) Manager, added: “It is great news to hear that the council is investing this money to improve the town centre’s street scene.
“I am particularly pleased to hear that there’s going to be a full repair of the paving and that it will be sealed, as this will help to prevent any staining from spillages that can seep into the flagging and leave a permanent mark.
“The work will help to give the High Street a much cleaner appearance.”
She added: “The BID currently funds various streetscape improvements, such as the hanging baskets, colourful bunting and banners, so the council’s new investment will complement our initiatives to make the town centre and seafront look brighter, cleaner and more welcoming.”
In total, £400,000 will be spent on repairing potholes, £117,000 will be spent on repairing the paving slabs, signs and posts in High Street and £100,000 will be spent on resurfacing Western Esplanade and Leather Lane.