Pothole petition calls on Government to save Barking and Dagenham streets

Potholes in Station Parade, Barking.

Potholes in Station Parade, Barking. - Credit: Archant

»Fed up with potholes in the roads? Don’t point the finger at the local authority, blame the Government.

That’s what Barking and Dagenham council is saying in an e-petition calling on the Department for Transport to invest more money in highway maintenance.

The subsidy granted to the borough has decreased over the years and is given in small annual sums that get swallowed up by “reactive repairs”, the council says.

The petition states: “Due to the poor state of many of our back roads we have been forced to spend an increasing amount of money filling in potholes after they happen.”

“Instead the council wants a five-year grant to allow them to pursue programmes of planned maintenance.

“By spending more on highway maintenance we can reduce the bill in the long run, reducing the need for expensive and temporary patching,” they wrote.

The petition follows the launch of the council’s Save our Streets campaign last October, backing action to tackle pot holes, while a £6million programme of road re-surfacing covering 59 streets commenced around the same time.

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Pot holes not only cause problems for drivers but also wheelchair users.

Derek Brown, of Hurstbourne Gardens, Barking, says he has huge difficulty trying to cross uneven roads in his wheelchair.

A Department for Transport spokesman said: “The Government is providing councils in England with more than £3 billion between 2011 and 2015 to maintain their highways. It is ultimately up to local highway authorities to determine how they prioritise their funding.”

The petition can be found on the Number 10 website at http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/50044