County says £1.7m extra funding will still only go so far as locals rage at delays in fixing dangerous road defects

The pitted surface on Mareham Lane, near Aldi in Sleaford has frustrated Coun Adrian Snookes. EMN-180902-180424001
The pitted surface on Mareham Lane, near Aldi in Sleaford has frustrated Coun Adrian Snookes. EMN-180902-180424001

Residents and councillors have been pointing out areas in the Sleaford and Ruskington areas where a £1.7m boost, supplied to the county to fill in an estimated 30,000 more potholes, could be spent.

The Government has given the county council a further £1,736,514 from its 2017/18 Pothole Action Fund. This is in addition to the £2.5m awarded to the council previously.

Sleaford Town Councillor Adrian Snookes is hoping some of the cash will be spent on Mareham Lane outside Aldi. He said it is dangerous: “I have reported it three times and they (highways) have assured me they are going to get it done next month, which is not good enough. They fixed some holes there last year when someone fell off their bike. Vehicles are getting damaged and then the county council has to pay for the repairs costing taxpayers more money.”

Potholes in Great Hale have led to the parish council writing to complain demanding action while Heckington Parish Council has had their local county councillor battling for repairs.

One Ruskington resident, Rob Stuart took to Facebook to highlight what looked to be a lack of forward planning when he photographed white line painters putting road markings through unfilled potholes at the junction of Station Road and The Sidings.

He said: “There are all sorts of cracks and bits missing and that pothole has been there for five weeks and I have reported it three times. The road gets a lot of use.”

The local highways manager said: “The pothole does of course need repairing, after which we’ll arrange for this small length of line to be repainted properly.

“We’ll aim to ensure it doesn’t happen again.”

Coun Richard Davies, Executive Member for Highways and Transport, said: “The weather this year has been especially bad for the roads, so this extra money is particularly welcome.

“We’re repairing thousands of potholes every month, with over 4,000 dealt with in December alone.

“Dangerous defects are fixed as a matter of urgency, with other issues being prioritised and dealt with as resources allow. That way we can get the most out of the available funding.

“While this extra £1.7m will make a difference, there’s much more to be done, and we would like to see even greater Government investment in our local roads.

“We spend around £50m on highways maintenance each year. We have 5,500 miles of road to maintain and that funding will only go so far.

“If councils here received the average funding for council areas in England, the region would benefit from £116 million of extra funding for services every year – some of which could be used towards highways repairs. That would make a massive difference.”