£619k grant to fix our roads but we need £68m....

Potholes on North Avenue, Wakefield.
Potholes on North Avenue, Wakefield.

Wakefield Council is to get an extra £619,000 from the government to help repair the district’s roads.

The Department of Transport cash is a share of £168m given to councils across the country from a dedicated pothole repair fund.

It means the council now has £5.5m to spend on road repairs for the next year.

But Coun David Dagger, cabinet member for transport and highways, put the cost at repairing all damaged roads across the district at £68m.

He said: “I am pleased Wakefield has received its share from the government pot.

“We understand that potholes are a menace to motorists and the extra £619,000 will provide an important contribution towards bringing our roads up to scratch.

“It will be used to help repair potholes, improving the condition of our roads.”

The council says it is now looking at how to spend the additional funding to help improve the district’s 900 mile road network, with work starting this summer.

Coun Dagger added: “Like every council in the country we face a major challenge in repairing and maintaining our roads.

“This money will help ease the backlog of road repairs in the short-term but is still nowhere near the £68m needed to bring our roads up to perfect conditions.

“We will continue to do the best we can with the money we have but urge the government to make more funding available to keep our roads safe and well maintained.”

The repairs carried out with the £619,000 are expected to be completed by March next year.

Wakefield Council leader Peter Box said the roads were now the council’s top priority as he announced a reshuffle including the creation of a new portfolio for transport and highways.

Ian Thompson, the council’s service director for highways, said £68m would put the roads in “perfect condition.”

To report a pothole call 0345 8 506 506.