3:00pm Wednesday 19th December 2012
By Sarah Davies
HIGHWAYS teams in Worcestershire will receive an extra £3.2million funding to repair potholes over the next two years.
The county’s MPs were written to by transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin following Chancellor George Osborne’s Autumn Statement to confirm Worcestershire would be one of the largest beneficiaries of extra funding for road maintenance.
The funding is on top of previous budgets for highway maintenance and will help Worcestershire County Council to repair flood and frost damage on its road network.
Councillor John Smith, cabinet member with responsibility for highways and transport, said the authority was delighted at the news. He said: “A huge amount of work has been carried out over the past three years to improve and repair the road network across the county, and we're very proud of the achievements in this area, but of course the work isn't over yet as we continue to work to maintain and extend the life of our roads, and the extra funds awarded by the Government will support us in this.
“Worcestershire's roads are of critical importance to our residents, as has been shown in the recent round of Have Your Say roadshows, where many people took the time to speak with councillors and council officers about their thoughts and concerns, so we know our residents will join us in celebrating this excellent news.”
The Government has also set aside £170million address pinch points in England’s road network and Worcester MP Robin Walker is urging the county council to submit a bid.
Mr Walker said: “It is absolutely right that the government should be investing infrastructure at this time.
“In addition to providing jobs in the local construction sector this will also help to address longstanding problems on our roads and help to keep the traffic moving.
“I am delighted that Worcestershire is getting more than £3million over two years to help with highways maintenance.
“Given the recent floods and the damage that they have caused as well as the threat of an icy Winter, I am sure this money will be well used.
“I would also like to see our county bidding for more support in addressing bottlenecks and helping to unblock pinch points in our highways network.
“I know that the county council and district councils have already clubbed together to make sure a significant chunk of their new homes bonus money goes into improvements to the Southern Link.
“I would certainly support them in bidding to the pinch points fund for more funding for this vital artery.”
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