Road is causing a hole lot of trouble for residents

DAMAGE: Terry Hawker with other residents at Ferrybridge Cottages, upset they have been told to pay to repair road

DAMAGE: Terry Hawker with other residents at Ferrybridge Cottages, upset they have been told to pay to repair road

First published in News Dorset Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Senior Reporter

ROAD woes are causing a hole lot of trouble for elderly residents in Weymouth – and they say the county council won’t help them out.

A road behind Ferrybridge Cottages is ‘unadopted’ and so doesn’t fall under Dorset County Council’s responsibility.

Residents say that the road was severely damaged in storms earlier this year and is covered in ‘huge’ potholes that fill with rainwater. They have been refused a request to the county council for a donation of tarmac scalpings so they can fill in the holes themselves.

The council says the residents must pay for the tarmac scalping, which is a leftover product from road works, like other farmers and owners of private land.

But resident Terry Hawker says he believes the council has a responsibility to help because it is ‘just a matter of time’ before an elderly person is injured on the road.

He said: “We need some help down here.

“It’s tarmac scalping we’re after because it does stay there.

“We’re not asking for a huge amount.

“I contacted highways to see if we could get some. We’re willing to fill in the holes ourselves, it’s just the stuff we need.

“They’ve come back and said about £213 for a load.

“I am willing to put in a chunk of the money myself, but the people around here have not got the money.

“They are all elderly and it’s a lot to ask them to get together.

“Surely it’s surplus?”

A spokesman for Dorset County Council said: “We have spoken with a resident from Ferrybridge Cottages about resurfacing.

“Unfortunately it is not part of our highway.

“As Ferrybridge Cottages is a private, unadopted road, we are unable to carry out resurfacing work.

“Residents of private roads are able to purchase materials similar to an arrangement we have with farmers and private farmland.”

  • The government estimates that there are approximately 40,000 unadopted roads in England and Wales, making up 4,000 miles of road surface and the total cost of bringing them up to an ‘adoptable’ standard would be around £3billion.

The law on maintenance of private roads is complex and is contained in the Highways Act 1980. By definition, an unadopted road is not maintained at public expense and the local authority is under ‘no obligation’ to pay for its maintenance.

Comments (5)

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7:08am Wed 14 May 14

Rodwellocal says...

Unusually, a case where the county council are bang on right! It's an unadopted road so quite understandably, they ain't gonna fix it! If I wanted my drive retarmacced, I wouldn't expect the council to come & do it, I'd pay a reputable contractor.
Unusually, a case where the county council are bang on right! It's an unadopted road so quite understandably, they ain't gonna fix it! If I wanted my drive retarmacced, I wouldn't expect the council to come & do it, I'd pay a reputable contractor. Rodwellocal
  • Score: 28

7:18am Wed 14 May 14

terra firma says...

Looking at the picture it would suggest that the Council collects Waste from the rear of these properties rather than the main road. If that is the case their vehicle is effectively recognising what appears to be private property for public use. I think there are legal precedents where similar circumstances prevailed and 'public' use was established.
Looking at the picture it would suggest that the Council collects Waste from the rear of these properties rather than the main road. If that is the case their vehicle is effectively recognising what appears to be private property for public use. I think there are legal precedents where similar circumstances prevailed and 'public' use was established. terra firma
  • Score: -5

11:52am Wed 14 May 14

koeterwaals says...

terra firma wrote:
Looking at the picture it would suggest that the Council collects Waste from the rear of these properties rather than the main road. If that is the case their vehicle is effectively recognising what appears to be private property for public use. I think there are legal precedents where similar circumstances prevailed and 'public' use was established.
But isn't it the same as when a waste truck goes up a private farm track etc. to collect refuse?
It is a private road but if you want to have your rubbish collected then they will need to use it.
I think if you pushed the council on that point, they might tell all the residents that they are now obliged to take all their bins to the end of the road so that the refuse truck no longer needs to use the track.
[quote][p][bold]terra firma[/bold] wrote: Looking at the picture it would suggest that the Council collects Waste from the rear of these properties rather than the main road. If that is the case their vehicle is effectively recognising what appears to be private property for public use. I think there are legal precedents where similar circumstances prevailed and 'public' use was established.[/p][/quote]But isn't it the same as when a waste truck goes up a private farm track etc. to collect refuse? It is a private road but if you want to have your rubbish collected then they will need to use it. I think if you pushed the council on that point, they might tell all the residents that they are now obliged to take all their bins to the end of the road so that the refuse truck no longer needs to use the track. koeterwaals
  • Score: 10

12:38pm Thu 15 May 14

WhatThe... says...

Its a Private road and the residents will all know that and will also know that maintenance is their problem. I agree that the Council should not be doing it nor should they 'donate' any material. Even scalpings and their delivery has a cost.
As for the bins in the pictuture - we dont know that the Refuse lorry uses that road, it may be that the bins are just stored at the back and have to be put out on bin day.
Its a Private road and the residents will all know that and will also know that maintenance is their problem. I agree that the Council should not be doing it nor should they 'donate' any material. Even scalpings and their delivery has a cost. As for the bins in the pictuture - we dont know that the Refuse lorry uses that road, it may be that the bins are just stored at the back and have to be put out on bin day. WhatThe...
  • Score: 1

12:55pm Thu 15 May 14

JackJohnson says...

Now's the time to get your drive relaid. Plenty of people looking for a job to do while they're on 'holiday' in the area. They'll do a decent job, honest, and won't mind being payed in cash, so can work much cheaper than people who bother with trivial things like income tax, NI, council tax and VAT.

Can't give you an address, but look for any caravan with roadworking type machinery outside.
Now's the time to get your drive relaid. Plenty of people looking for a job to do while they're on 'holiday' in the area. They'll do a decent job, honest, and won't mind being payed in cash, so can work much cheaper than people who bother with trivial things like income tax, NI, council tax and VAT. Can't give you an address, but look for any caravan with roadworking type machinery outside. JackJohnson
  • Score: 1

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