Fourteen-year wait to repair UK’s pothole-ridden roads

Nearly two million potholes were filled last year but it will still take 14 years to clear the backlog

Potholes left to grow as DfT underspends its budget

Despite a pothole being repaired every 15 seconds, councils in England and Wales are struggling to attend to the growing backlog of road repairs. The estimated bill for pothole repairs will be £11.8billion says the latest report from the Asphalt Industry Alliance. 

The report estimates it would take councils 14 years to attend all of the required road repairs, a number likely to increase thanks to recent budget cuts. Last year, councils in England and Wales faced on average a 16 per cent fall in their road maintenance budgets.

• Government to tackle fuel theft from filling station forecourts

Last year, the Government announced a  £250million pothole fund to aid councils fix over four million potholes by 2020/2021, with the first £50million to be distributed over the next 12 months. Over 100 councils in England will receive funding to help remove nearly 943,000 potholes, with councils in South West and South East to receive the most. 

However, despite a quarter of a billion pounds dedicated to repairing potholes, the total shortfall in the annual carriageway maintenance budget was a staggering £791million in 2015, up £230million from the previous year. Each council currently faces an average £69million estimated on-etime cost to bring its roads up to a reasonable condition. 

Potholes cause £684m of damage to UK cars

The growing backlog of road repairs isn't just an issue council bookkeepers have to deal with, motorists are starting to feel the effects of lagging road repairs. The deteriorating state of Britain's roads cost motorists £684million in pothole related damage. Last year, 6.3million drivers had to pay on average £108 for repairs to tyres, wheels, suspension and body work, caused by potholes, according to tyre and parts specialist Kwik Fit. 

• London parking space for sale: £350,000

Cllr Peter Box, Transport spokesman at the Local Government Association, said: "It is becoming increasingly urgent to address the roads crisis we face as a nation. Our roads are deteriorating fast and it would take almost £12billion and be close to 2030 before we could bring them up to scratch. 

"Our roads crisis is only going to get worse unless we address it as a national priority. The Government's own traffic projections predict a potential increase in local traffic of more than 40 per cent by 2040. Councils desperately need long-term and consistent funding to invest in the resurfacing projects which our road network desperately needs over the next decade." 

What are the roads like where you live? Tell us in the comments below...

Recommended

Treasury eyes up road pricing to plug £30bn fuel-duty gap
News

Treasury eyes up road pricing to plug £30bn fuel-duty gap

The UK’s Petrol and diesel car ban will bring with it huge losses for the Treasury as fuel-duty revenue dries up; road pricing looks set to be the sol…
17 Nov 2020
Road bosses approve 138 miles of new smart motorway with no hard shoulder
smart motorway
News

Road bosses approve 138 miles of new smart motorway with no hard shoulder

Nine new sections of all-lane running smart motorway are set to open despite concerns over the lack of a hard shoulder
9 Nov 2020
Fiat-Chrysler faces £5bn UK lawsuit over defeat devices
Fiat Doblo 2015 - steering wheel
Fiat

Fiat-Chrysler faces £5bn UK lawsuit over defeat devices

Around half a million FCA-engined vehicles in England and Wales could be affected by diesel emissions scandal, says law firm
27 Oct 2020
Dash cam portal saves 170,000 hours of police time in two years
News

Dash cam portal saves 170,000 hours of police time in two years

Nextbase's National Dash Cam Safety Portal is used by 33 police forces and has recorded more than 20,000 uploads
21 Oct 2020

Most Popular

New Suzuki Swace estate launched on UK market
News

New Suzuki Swace estate launched on UK market

Based on the Toyota Corolla Touring Sports, the Suzuki Swace estate comes to the UK
11 Nov 2020
All-new Renault Kangoo van unveiled ahead of 2021 launch
Renault Kangoo ZE Concept - show pic
Renault Kangoo

All-new Renault Kangoo van unveiled ahead of 2021 launch

First images of the third-generation Renault Kangoo panel van - which will soon square-up to the new Volkswagen Caddy
12 Nov 2020
How to transfer a number plate from one car to another
MINI number plate change
Tips & advice

How to transfer a number plate from one car to another

Need to know how to transfer a number plate between vehicles? Our step-by-step guide breaks it down
22 Nov 2020