St Bernard’s Avenue pothole row continues

Potholes.
Potholes.

The demand for repairs to the ‘disgraceful’ potholes in St Bernard’s Avenue is continuing, after a campaign leader condemned the perceived ‘silence’ from the Highways Department.

Councillor Ros Jackson, a town and district councillor, gave a speech and handed in an 860-strong petition before Lincolnshire County Council on December 15, but said she is disappointed by the alleged ‘silence’ from Highways Portfolio Holder, Coun Richard Davies.

Coun Jackson claimed: “Since (December 15), I have not had an official response.

“This is in spite of the Highways and Transport Scrutiny committee meeting on January 22. I was told that a response wouldn’t be forthcoming until after that meeting.”

She continued: “The state of the road has deteriorated considerably, just as predicted, unfortunately.

“Typically it takes from six weeks to three months for potholes to re-form, but the holes that were filled during the first week of December have become dangerously large over this winter by the middle of January, so it’s clear that the disintegration is accelerating.

“The potholes are a disgrace, and the silence from the Portfolio Holder is a damning indictment of how little he cares about local people’s highway safety.

“Action must be taken to prevent further injuries.”

A local resident, Michelle Gardner, also got in touch with the Leader last week, saying she had suffered nasty bruising after coming off her scooter when she hit a pothole while swerving to avoid another poorly-repaired hole.

Coun Richard Davies, Executive Member for Highways, hit back at claims he has been ‘silent’ or inactive since Coun Jackson’s speech.

He said: “Coun Jackson’s petition was passed to the local highways manager, who investigated the issue and responded to her in early January on behalf of the council.

“In addition, I made a public statement myself on this issue, which was reported in the Leader, so I would dispute Coun Jackson’s claim that we have been silent on this.

“I was sorry to hear about the resident who was involved in an accident, and hope that they are okay.

“The weather this year has been a nightmare for the roads, and we are seeing even more potholes than usual.

“We will be repairing the potholes, but we have to prioritise repairs to the busiest routes, so we can’t give a firm date for when the team will get to St Bernard’s Avenue at this stage.

“And as we have said in the past, we are planning to resurface the road in future, and it is included in our repair programme for the 2019/20 financial year.

“In the meantime, we would advise people to take extra care on this route.”