Pothole damage could be cleaned up across the UK as part of a new £2.5billion fund into local road infrastructure which promises to carry out repairs through hundreds of miles of roads. However, leading campaigner Mr Pothole has urged the Chancellor to do more before claiming the fund will not do much to fix Britain’s network.
Labour’s Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell also came down on the latest pothole fund as he described the policy as part of a gimmicky grab-bag.
He claimed the fund aimed to patch up the problems the Conservatives had created before adding the party were making the same mistakes of the last ten years.
He said: “This rehash of Theresa May’s pothole fund is another policy announcement that shows the Tories trying to patch up problems they have created without getting a grip on the underlying state of infrastructure in this country.
“The Tories have created a £192 billion infrastructure investment hole over the last decade, and throughout that time they have failed to adopt a strategy for investment in the long-term.
The Chancellor claimed it was “vital” the government kept the roads in a good condition which will help speed up journeys and reduce damage.
Mr Sunak said: “We can’t level up Britain and spread opportunity if we are spending our journeys dodging potholes and forking out for the damage they cause. It’s vital we keep roads in good condition.
“That’s why we are going to eradicate the scourge of potholes in every part of the country. This funding will fill millions of potholes every year – speeding up journeys, reducing vehicle damage and making our roads safer.”
Research from Confused.com has revealed over 905,000 potholes were reported in just one year. In total around £3million of compensation is paid out by local councils each year as thousands of claims are made to fix the damage.
Local regions are responsible for paying for repairs as long as motorists can prove authorities were negligent in their repairs.
Surrey council was forced to pay out over £300,000 in claims last year whole Bury and Northamptonshire paid out over £200,000.
The news has been met positively by council chiefs who said fixing the road was a priority for councils across the UK.
Transport spokesperson for the Local Government Association, David Renard, said: “We are pleased the Chancellor has listened to and acted on our calls for significantly more funding to fill and repair potholes.
“Fixing our roads is a top priority for councils, who fix a pothole every 17 seconds. We look forward to seeing the details of how this money will be allocated between councils.
“Extra funding will help councils to do more to maintain our roads, and will go a long way to help tackling our local road repairs backlog.”
The Chancellor had also claimed the changes are the biggest ever investment into stratrgic roads with £27million of tarmac, 100 junction and 4,000 miles of roads.
Alongside the pothole fund, the Chancellor has announced an investment of over £1billion in local transport in 12 citeis across the UK.
Published at Wed, 11 Mar 2020 10:42:00 +0000