Cheltenham cyclists concerned over bad pothole repairs

Image caption,
Almost 100,000 potholes have been repaired by the County Council since January 2010

Gloucestershire's pothole problem is being made worse by poor workmanship, according to a local cycling group.

Alan Williams, chairman of Cheltenham and County Cycling Club, said potholes on his road were not drilled out but simply filled with tarmac.

Stan Waddington from the county council said each repair should be cut, cleaned, filled and sealed but they need to know if this is not happening.

Some 9,000 repairs have been made to potholes in the county this year.

'Waste of time'

Mr Williams, who burst his bicycle's rear tyre last week after riding over a pothole in Gotheringon, said that workmen are not properly treating the edges which allows water to get in and lifts the tarmac "meaning a bigger pothole appears".

Another club member, Roger Unwin, said that repairs are a "complete waste of time because the council doesn't do them properly".

He has visited hospital twice in the past five years after hitting potholes in Cheltenham at night.

On one occasion he said he broke the front forks of his touring bike and ruined a brand new wheel, tyre and inner tube which ultimately forced him to cancel a planned cycling holiday in Spain.

Simon O'Connor had a similar experience in January when he snapped his bike's chainstay after hitting a pothole on one of the club's Tuesday night rides.

On average, Gloucestershire County Council spends about £8m per year on repairing potholes and patching as well as £14m on capital projects like resurfacing schemes.

The authority announced it expects to receive some of the £100m being released by the Department of Transport to help repair winter-damaged roads.

"Last year, we received £1.6m under a similar scheme," said Mr Waddington.

"This year, we have already identified several areas where work is needed as a matter of urgency and this cash will be prioritised into these schemes."

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