Pot hole campaign looks to Westminster for more money

Action to tackle the multi-million pound pot hole problem plaguing the borough’s streets is being called for in a new campaign hoping to grab Westminster’s attention.

Save Our Streets, backed by councillors, aims to convince central government to invest more money in local highway maintenance.

It argues that spending money on reactive work – which sees pot holes filled in once they appear – costs more in the long run than relaying roads before serious pot holes occur.

Cllr Mick McCarthy, cabinet member for environment, said: “Our residents pay plenty of money out in road tax each year, and it’s about time they saw some of that cash being spent on improving their local streets.

“It might seem like wishful thinking to be asking for more money during a time of government cut backs, but we feel that more revenue from road tax should be invested in our local roads.”

He added: “It is more cost effective to invest in planned works rather than reactive maintenance, which is expensive and has to be re-done quickly.”

Recent harsh winters, coupled with a reduction in funding, has left many of the roads around the borough riddled with pot holes.

Most Read

Very few of the borough’s roads are maintained by Transport for London and, because many of its streets were built around the same time, they are deteriorating together, creating what Cllr McCarthy called a “maintenance time bomb.”

In September, Barking and Dagenham announced a �6million programme of road re-surfacing covering 59 streets across the borough. However, many minor roads were left off the list despite desperately needing to be re-surfaced.

Norman Sampson, of Cornshaw Road – which was not included on the road re-surfacing list — said he whole-heartedly supported the new campaign, adding “The area is decaying so much and nothing has been done about it, so it just gets worse and worse.

“I want the council to start to make the place look a bit tidier, a bit decent,” said Mr Sampson, 77. “They are creating a feeling that we are living in a tip. The council should be spending money uplifting the area, instead they are doing the reverse.”