Savings from the curtailing of the HS2 project – £8.3 billion – are committed to pothole repairs to address our deteriorating roads.
Earlier this year, a report by the Asphalt Industry Alliance (AIA) declared that roads in England and Wales are in such a state that it will cost £14 billion to put them back in order, and just a couple of months ago a report from Halford claimed potholes are costing motorists £7.5 billion a year as councils reject the majority of claims.
But now – and surely not because there’s an election next year?- The government has announced an additional £8.3 billion to tackle potholes, made possible, it’s said, by the curtailing of HS2.
Of course, that’s not £8.3 billion this year but spread over the next decade, with each local authority getting £150 million now and the same in 2024/2025 with the rest spread over the period until 2034.
It may only be 60 per cent of the amount the AIA said was necessary, but assuming this money is on top of what’s already being spent on potholes it should go a long way to making roads driveable without fear of damage.
Transport Secretary Mark Harper said:
Most people travel by road and potholes can cause misery for motorists, from expensive vehicle repairs to bumpy, slow and dangerous journeys. Our £8.3 billion boost to repair roads across the country shows that we’re on the side of drivers.