Suffolk County Council urged to listen to parishes over road repairs

Some of Great Whelneatham's highways problems, lights hidden by trees, blocked drains and faulty lights ANL-161020-165318001
Some of Great Whelneatham's highways problems, lights hidden by trees, blocked drains and faulty lights ANL-161020-165318001
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A parish council chairman has accused Suffolk County Council of ‘not listening’ when they report road problems.

Peter Royce, chairman of Great and Little Whelnetham Parish Council, has a list of faults, from street lights to blocked drains, that he says have not been acted on.

He said: “We don’t get listened to. I’m not asking for special treatment, but when you get a blocked drain and people moaning about it, you should get some action.”

He said the county encourages people to report road faults via its dedicated website. But Mr Royce added: “If that doesn’t work, the public come to us, but we only have the same system to report it.”

Among the problems he highlights are blocked drains near the Stanningfield Road junction with A134 which he says was reported on September 9 but still has grass growing through the cover,

He says two lights near the school are screened by trees and one has a blown bulb.

The footpath along the busy A134 suffers inadequate lighting overgrown hedges.

Mr Royce also questions the county’s pothole repair policy. They were told two potholes on a bend near the school were not deep enough for repair, but he argues that because they are on a bend cyclists cannot see them.

The county has listed nearby repairs but Mr Royce said:“They talk about cost cutting, but if you’ve got a team coming here to do that, why not do them all?”

A county spokesman said: “We have works planned for the October half term to carry out carriageway patching and road marking renewals outside the primary school.

“ The street light near to the school has been provisionally programmed for repair during that week too.

“Poor lighting on the A134 was as the result of Suffolk Highways not being able to repair them due to the closeness to overhead cables. However, work is expected to start soon.

“The hedges along the A134 have been cut back by the landowner and edging back of overgrowth on our footpaths has been programmed over winter. The blocked drains have been referred back to the contractor.”

He said Suffolk uses a management system which uses a ‘matrix approach’ to prioritise defects in terms of size and the route’s importance.

He added: “We also urge everyone, councillor or member of the public, to report any issues with the highway online at www.suffolk.gov.uk/roads-and-transport.”