Councils across England have today been allocated their share of £500 million for highways maintenance, with the funding expected to fix the equivalent of 10 million potholes across the country.
It is the second instalment from the £2.5 billion Potholes Fund, providing £500 million a year between 2020/21 and 2024/25, announced by the Chancellor in the 2020 Budget – and is part of wider funding the Department provides for road maintenance, totalling over £1.1 billion across England in 2021/22.
With the average pothole costing around £50 to fill in, the funding will ensure that the equivalent of 10 million potholes can be repaired, making thousands of local roads both safer and easier to drive and cycle on.
Transport Minister Baroness Vere said: “We know potholes are more than just a nuisance – they can be dangerous to drivers and cyclists alike, and cause damage to thousands of vehicles every year.
“The funding allocated today will help councils ensure roads in their area are kept up to standard, and that the potholes that blight road users can be dealt with promptly.”
The Department has already invested heavily in pothole filling since 2015, including the £296 million Pothole Action Fund which ran from 2015/16 – 2020/21. It also topped up highway maintenance investment in 2018 with a one-off £420 million boost to all highway authorities in England, including London.
The Government is committed to supporting motorists. Through RIS2, the Government is investing £27 billion in the biggest ever roads programme – with £10bn of the record-breaking sum specifically for road maintenance, operations and renewals.
Jack Cousens, head of roads policy for the AA, says; “This previously committed investment is welcome, but despite the lockdowns and reduced traffic levels, our local road network is in desperate need of repair.
“Last month, just 15% of our members told us that residential roads were in a good condition with drivers in the North West, South East and East Midlands giving their streets the lowest ratings*.
“Patching up roads may seem like a quick fix, but in reality, it is just a sticking plaster. In order for roads to remain safe and smooth, they need completely resurfacing.
“However, studies show that residential roads in England get resurfaced on average every 119 years**. If you’re street is lucky enough to be chosen we’d recommend a socially distanced celebration, as it will probably be a once in a lifetime event!”
* AA Yonder Driver Poll, January 2021, 17,373 respondents
- On a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 is terrible and 10 excellent, how would you rate the condition of road surfaces close to where you live? Residential streets (roads used mainly for access to / from people’s homes)
NET 0-3 RANKING (ENGLAND REGIONS ONLY)
|4=||Yorkshire & Humberside||29%|