£9 million repair bill to tackle Shropshire's potholed roads

By Lucy Todman | Transport | Published:

Potholed roads across Shropshire are to be fixed as a £9 million programme of work gets under way.

Shropshire Council received a huge number of calls over the winter months about damaged road surfaces – and its pothole gangs have been busy on maintenance and repairs since.

The summer surface-dressing programme will get underway shortly and will continue until late July.

Altogether, the council says it will have spent £1.8m on “surface dressing” 360,000sq m of roads and £7 million government funding on resurfacing more than 50 miles of roads this year.

Potholes being repaired

Surface dressing - applying and rolling aggregate ‘chippings’ onto a bituminous binder - is a proven quick, efficient and cost-effective way of maintaining skid-resistance and waterproofing road surfaces.

It forms a major part of the council’s annual road maintenance programme and – along with resurfacing – plays an important part in preventing potholes forming on the county’s roads. Nearly 40 sites have been identified for treatment across the county on all types of road.

Andy Wilde, the council’s engineering programme manager, said: “The surface dressing programme is a big part of our preventative maintenance strategy. We rate the work in red, amber and green and we aim to prevent roads stepping out of the green into the amber.

"We will shortly begin our two-month programme, which will see roads from the north of the county to the south being maintained.


Temporary road closures required

“We have other programmes of work that will come on line after that work is completed, which will prepare the road network for autumn and winter. We have made significant investment in the road network.”

Due to the limited width of some roads, over 85 per cent of the sites will require a temporary road closure for the works to be carried out safely.

Where road closures are not necessary, other forms of temporary traffic management will be in place, including temporary signals with convoy working where appropriate. On cul-de-sacs limited access will be available.


Potholes being repaired

For the majority of A and B roads centre line studs/cat’s eyes also need to be removed and replaced under a temporary closure. It’s envisaged that stud removal will take place overnight, followed by dressing and sweeping operations during the following couple of days.

The replacement of studs and road markings on some sites will necessarily take place up to ten days later. Again, this will be during one night’s (8pm-6am) road closure.

Most of the closures will only be required for a few hours for the dressing operation.

Steve Davenport, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for highways and parking, said: “As well as improving and protecting our road surfaces, this important programme of work plays a crucial role in helping to prevent potholes and other defects forming in the future. Pothole treatment is very much about prevention as well as cure and this is one important way that we can aim to prevent potholes forming next winter.”

The programme of work may alter due to wet weather or other unforeseen events.

Lucy Todman

By Lucy Todman

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star and Shrewsbury Chronicle based in Shrewsbury.


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