Cumbria in dark about how much it will receive to fix potholes from £201m fund
Cumbria remains in the dark about how much it will receive to fix potholes from a £201m fund.
Transport Secretary Chris Grayling has said councils would receive a share of £50m for potholes and a further £151m if they can demonstrate best practice in roads maintenance.
The Department for Transport said the money would come from the £6.6bn the Government is providing to improve local roads up to 2021.
Mr Grayling said: “Every motorist knows that potholes have been a problem in the last few years. That is why the Government is continuing to step up its funding to local authorities to address this.”
Keith Little, the county council’s cabinet member for highways and transport, said the news was “welcome” but the county had not been given any indication of how much it would receive.
“The money will be used on road surfacing and improvement schemes, including potholes, as well as ongoing bridge repair works,” said Mr Little.
He said the schedule of work would be decided in due course.
During a meeting Barrow county councillor Sol Wielkopolski raised the issue of “craters” in some of the town’s backstreets at a meeting with council highways officials. He said the problem was caused by subsidence in backstreets due to failing sewers.
Mr Wielkopolski called for repairs to be done more quickly. “It is just not acceptable and the residents have just become so used to it now, they are blasé and accepting it. It’s not acceptable and it’s not right,” said the Conservative councillor for Newbarns and Parkside.
County council highways officials said their duty was to keep major roads safe but the ideal solution was to resurface the back street rather than “patching”, which did not last as long.
Highways network manager for Barrow, Kieran Tetchner, said: “We are fully aware we have a problem in some back streets.
“We have 30km of back streets, many of which are in a poor state of repair, and we suffer from the fact that because they are back streets they do not attract traffic and the importance that main roads do. Lots of them are built over Victorian sewers which are now all coming to the end of their life which is a massive problem for United Utilities.”
Local committee chairman Kevin Hamilton, the Labour councillor for Risedale in south Cumbria, said the council had to guard against spending limited funds on backstreets which the utility companies should be putting right.