Oldham Council will be concentrating its highways maintenance cash on main A and B roads as its budget struggles to cope with the sheer volume of potholes in the region.
Council leader Jim McMahon (pictured) said: “It’s no surprise whatsoever that potholes continue to dominate any survey that we do of local concerns.
“To address this we made an extra £2 million available. That hasn’t been easy but it was the right thing to do if we were to stand any chance of catching up.
“In the past 12 months we’ve now carried out repairs to more than 4,500 highways defects.
“But we also need to be realistic. We simply don’t have the money to keep throwing millions at potholes.
“So as we work to get even on the potholes situation we’re now looking at a new approach whereby we give overall priority to main roads (A and B roads) as our Priority Routes.
“The level of service on these routes should be first class because the vast majority of the public are using them on a daily basis.
“But I also know that we shouldn’t just be looking at potholes.
“We should include in this programme works to signage, road markings and street furniture, including basic maintenance like painting and replacing damaged sections. These roads are our ‘shop window’ and we need to get them right.
“We will then ensure those potholes which are causing a danger or could give rise to a compensation claim are prioritised. It makes no sense to ignore those potholes which cost us far more in the end through other costs.
“We will, of course, aim to repair all potholes. We can’t just leave roads in a state of disrepair, but if we do prioritise main routes we will need to accept that smaller roads and cul de sacs will take longer to sort. That’s not ideal, but it is sensible and it makes the most of a limited budget.”