Star comment: Still on a bumpy road with effects of austerity

The austerity package that has led to cuts in public services is designed to get the nation’s finances back on track, given a period of low growth.

We have to pay for the costs incurred during the pandemic while also recognising that Brexit and the War in Ukraine have both caused further high costs.

There are consequences as we seek to balance the books. Inflation has hit everyone’s weekly spend as food prices have followed the trajectory of energy bills and sky-rocketed.

Public services have also taken a hit, and motorists will be all too familiar with the issues of potholes. We have been reporting moans about potholes for decades and today we are again revealing how the issue is impacting on motorists.

The AA says it has seen a 22 per cent increase in call outs to breakdowns that are a direct result of hitting a pothole.

Anyone who drives in our region will know it is an issue. Those who are brave enough to cycle can also speak of the feat that they may catch a hole in the road.

The AA said councils have a responsibility to inspect local roads on a regular basis but “cannot be held responsible for a pothole they didn’t know about”. It has therefore urged people to report every road surface crack “no matter how small”.

Potholes can kill, particularly if you are on two wheels. And some local authorities are too slow to act. Anyone travelling in the A449 near Wombourne will tell you just how bad the road surface is, yet only now are repairs taking place despite many months of complaints. Our roads are not getting any safer and it seems we are a long way from a resolution. *** We imagine that we’re at the cutting edge of fashion. We are overwhelmed with online content, magazines and innumerable style guides, telling us how to dress, what to wear, and much more.

Yet it seems as if we’re followers of fashion, rather than leaders. The Romans were ahead of the game when it came to looking smart.

They were trying to style it out in ages past, and new work at Wroxeter has helped to demonstrate their preoccupation. We are fortunate to have such attractions as Wroxeter on our doorstep and lucky that it provides a window into the past. We can learn much from it and as we look for inexpensive ways to spend the forthcoming spring and summer holidays, there are plenty of attractions nearby.

History teaches us so much about the present, as well as the past, and Wroxeter is one of many historic venues that is worthy of further investigation.

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