Borough’s pothole problem improving

A  pothole on Wilton Avenue, Whelley
A pothole on Wilton Avenue, Whelley

FRUSTRATED motorists in Wigan have submitted more than 1,000 complaints about pot-holes, new research has revealed.

But the borough’s roads are in better condition than those of our nearest neighbours, according to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).

Wiganers lodged a total of 1,236 complaints to the council during 2013/14 although Bolton topped the list with 13,915, a series of Freedom of Information requests have revealed.

Simon Edmondson, Regional Chairman for the FSB, said: “There is a serious point to this research, and that’s our members, who pay significant amounts in business rates, expect the local roads to be of sound repair. The research we’ve done with business owners suggests many feel they aren’t getting value for money and want councils to spend a bit more of their cash on making roads of an acceptable standard. Most businesses rely in some way on roads to do business, whether it’s for their staff to get in to work or customers to come and spend with them.

“Having to navigate a minefield of potholes which can damage cars and also be hazardous for pedestrians doesn’t help anyone.”

The FSB conducted the research in response to a poll of its members which asked in which areas they would like to see more investment.

In total, 37 per cent of respondents opted for repairing the region’s roads, ahead of major transport infrastructure (31 per cent), and better apprenticeships (24 per cent).

Earlier this year Wigan Council pledged to spend £20m to keep the borough’s roads fit for use, including fixing potholes.

Coun David Molyneux, Wigan Council’s deputy leader, said: “As part of The Deal, Wigan Council is committed to investing in infrastructure to help people get around more easily.

“We will provide much safer and easier connections for pedestrians and car users.”