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Potholes in road

Funding agreed to fill local potholes

by Gemma Melling

More than £500,000 will be spent filling potholes and resurfacing roads in Newton-le-Willows and across St Helens over the next year.

St Helens Borough COuncil has had £524,114 of funding from the Department for Transport (DfT)’s Local Transport Capital Block Funding (Pothole Fund), distributed by the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority (LCRCA) for surfacing treatments and to conduct works to prevent and fix potholes.

But despite the funding pot, one Newton-le-Willows councillor warned the amount still fell far short of the amount that the Government has already cut from local highways budgets.

As a highways authority, St Helens Borough Council is responsible for 484 miles of road, with 1,698 pothole repairs carried out across the borough last year and a further 53 resurfacing schemes completed across 47 locations to improve road conditions.

Cllr Seve Gomez-Aspron MBE, Deputy Leader of St Helens Borough Council and Cabinet Member for Strategic Transport, said: “Road users quite rightly expect to see the borough’s roads in the best possible condition and we as a council go to great lengths with the resources available to us to ensure our road network is maintained to as high a standard as possible, which is challenging given the cuts we’ve faced from central government.

“While this funding is welcome, it nowhere near covers the amount of funding that the Government have cut from our highways funding since 2010. Nationally, on average, highways funding has been cut by around 50 per cent since 2010, but this is disproportionate and in boroughs like ours it’s closer to 70 per cent.

“Throughout the year, our highways team works exceptionally hard around the clock to deal with issues on our highways to make sure they are safe, whether you drive, cycle or walk – and we will continue to invest in this vital asset as we look to create a well-connected, accessible transport network across the borough which supports economic growth.”

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